“I wonder which is preferable — to walk around all your life swollen up with your secrets until you burst from the pressure of them, or to have them sucked out of you, every paragraph, every sentence, every word for them, so at the end you’re depleted of all that was once as precious to you as hoarded gold, as close to you as your skin — everything that was of the deepest importance to you, everything that made you cringe and wish to conceal, everything that belonged to you alone — and must spend the rest of your days like an empty sack flapping in the wind, an empty sack branded with a bright fluorescent label so that everyone will know what sort of secrets used to be inside you?”—Margaret Atwood (via suzywire)
“If you work for a man, in Heaven’s name work for him. If he pays wages that supply you your bread and butter, work for him, speak well of him, think well of him, and stand by him, and stand by the institution he represents. I think if I worked for a man, I would work for him. I would not work for him a part of his time, but all of his time. I would give an undivided service or none. If put to the pinch, an ounce of loyalty is worth a pound of cleverness. If you must vilify, condemn, and eternally disparage, why, resign your position, and when you are outside, damn to your heart’s content. But, I pray you, so long as you are a part of an institution, do not condemn it. Not that you will injure the institution – not that – but when you disparage the concern of which you are a part, you disparage yourself.”—Elbert Hubbard
“She’s kept her love for him as alive as the summer they first met. In order to do this, she’s turned life away. Sometimes she subsists for days on water and air. Being the only known complex life-form to do this, she should have a species named after her. Once Uncle Julian told me how the sculptor and painter Alberto Giacometti said that sometimes just to paint a head you have to give up the whole figure. To paint a leaf, you have to sacrifice the whole landscape. It might seem like you’re limiting yourself at first, but after a while you realize that having a quarter-of-an-inch of something you have a better chance of holding on to a certain feeling of the universe than if you pretended to be doing the whole sky.
My mother did not choose a leaf or a head. She chose my father. And to hold on to a certain feeling, she sacrificed the world.”
”— The History of Love, Nicole Krauss (via quote-book)