But perhaps age has taught me that the earth is still new, molten at the core and still forming, that black leaves in the winter forest will crawl with life in the spring, that our story is ongoing and it is indeed a crime to allow the heart's energies to dissipate with the fading of light on the horizon.
I believe every...man remembers the girl he thinks he should have married. She reappears to him in his lonely moments, or he sees her in the face of a young girl in the park, buying a snowball under an oak tree by the baseball diamond. But she belongs to back there, to somebody else, and that thought sometimes rends your heart in a way that you never share with anyone else.
But the participants [in war] never forgot the details of their experience, and like the Wandering Jew, they were condemned to remain their own history books, each containing a story they could not pass on to others and from which no one would learn anything of value.
I also believe my home state is cursed by ignorance and poverty and racism, much of it deliberately inculcated to control a vulnerable electorate. And I believe many of the politicians in Louisiana are among the most stomach-churning examples of white trash and venality I have ever known. To me, the fact that large numbers of people find them humorously picaresque is mind numbing, on a level with telling fond tales of one's rapist.
..why is it that in problematic situations almost everyone resorts to axioms and societal remedies that in actuality almost nobody believes in?...ask yourself, have you ever known anyone whose marriage was saved by a marriage counselor, whose drinking was cured by a psychiatrist, whose son was kept out of reform school by a social worker?
I sometimes subscribe to the belief that all historical events occur simultaneously, like a dream in the mind of God. Perhaps it is only man who views time sequentially and tries to impose a solar calendar upon it. What if other people, both dead and unborn, are living out their lives in the same space we occupy, without our knowledge or consent?" The Glass Rainbow, p. 138
If you don't compromise your gift, if you write each day as well as you can, and then submit your work and not worry about it and go on to the next piece, you suddenly find oddly enough that you're no more interested in the applause than the silence. You don't hear either one of them. You can never listen to the naysayers. If you do you won't survive.
writing is like being in love. You never get better at it or learn more about it. The day you think you do is the day you lose it. Robert Frost called his work a lover's quarrel with the world. It's ongoing. It has neither a beginning nor an end. You don't have to worry about learning things. The fire of one's art burns all the impurities from the vessel that contains it.
Today, there are more opportunities for writers in terms of access to larger success, but it's more difficult to publish a literary novel in the lower ranges. In other words, you almost have to hit a home run. You can hit a triple, maybe, but nobody's interested in a single.
Then the sun broke above the crest of the hills and the entire countryside looked soaked in blood, the arroyos deep in shadow, the cones of dead volcanoes stark and biscuit-colored against the sky. I could smell pinion trees, wet sage, woodsmoke, cattle in the pastures, and creek water that had melted from snow. I could smell the way the country probably was when it was only a dream in the mind of God.
In that moment, when watches and clocks misbehave and you feel a cold vapor wrap itself around your heart, you unconsciously draw a line at the bottom of a long column of numbers and come up with a sum. Perhaps it's one that fills you with contentment and endows you with a level of courage and an acceptance that you didn't know you possessed.Or maybe not.
Don't ever quit. Never quit. Never show anybody you're hurt. Grin and walk through the cannon smoke. It will drive them up the wall. You always stay true to your own principles. You always believe in your gift. God doesn't make mistakes when he presents someone with a gift like that. It's there for a reason. Tell the naysayers, those who reject you, to drop dead! Who cares?
In the alluvial sweep of the land, I thought I could see the past and the present and the future all at once, as though time were not sequential in nature but took place without a beginning or an end, like a flash of green light rippling outward from the center of creation, not unlike a dream inside the mind of God.
Today, there are more opportunities for writers in terms of access to larger success, but it’s more difficult to publish a literary novel in the lower ranges. In other words, you almost have to hit a home run. You can hit a triple, maybe, but nobody’s interested in a single.