Filed under writing

Beautiful Sentences: Christopher Isherwood

But we, most of us, lose our sense of proportion in the presence of a nun; and George, thus exposed at short range to this bride of Christ in her uncompromising medieval habit, finds himself becoming flustered, defensive.

Christopher Isherwood, A Single Man.

Tagged

Beautiful Sentences: Brenda Peynado

We knew full well that hate did not require an initial offense. Only original sin, only being born.

Brenda Peynado, “The Whitest Girl.”

Tagged

Beautiful Sentences: Louis Erdrich

Mine is not a church of the saved, but a church of the lost.

Louise Erdrich, Future Home of the Living God.

Tagged

Beautiful Sentences: Pascal Mercier

Of the thousand experiences we have, we find language for one at most and even then this was merely by chance and without the care it deserves. Buried under all the mute experiences are those unseen ones that give our life its form, its color, and its melody.

Pascal Mercier, Night Train to Lisbon.

Tagged

Beautiful Sentences: Siel Ju

We listened to the teenager next door with his basketball in the driveway, two quick bounces each time, followed by a lonely thump off the backboard.

Siel Ju, Cake Time.

Tagged

Beautiful Sentences: Pascal Mercier

And the words have to have a rhythm. A rhythm as the words have in Saint John, for example. Only then, only when they are poetry, do they really shed light on things.

Pascal Mercier, Night Train to Lisbon.

Tagged

Beautiful Sentences: Tadeusz Borowski

Only now do I realize what price was paid for building the ancient civilizations. The Egyptian pyramids, the temples, and Greek statues—what a hideous crime they were! How much blood must have poured on to the Roman roads, the bulwarks, and the city walls. Antiquity—the tremendous concentration camp where the slave was branded on the forehead by his master, and crucified for trying to escape! Antiquity—the conspiracy of free men against slaves!

Tadeusz Borowski, “Auschwitz, Our Home (A Letter)”

Tagged

Beautiful Sentences: Gerda Weissmann Klein

Why? Why did we walk like meek sheep to the slaughterhouse? Why did we not fight back? What had we to lose? Nothing but our lives. Why did we not un away and hide? We might have had a chance to survive. Why did we walk deliberately and obediently into their clutches?

I know why. Because we had faith in humanity. Because we did not really think that human beings were capable of committing such crimes.

Gerda Weissmann Klein, All But My Life: A Memoir.

Tagged

Beautiful Sentences: Tadeusz Borowski

“Save us. We are going to the gas chambers! Save us.”

And they rode slowly past us—the ten thousand silent men—and then disappeared from sight. Not one of us made a move, not one of us lifted a hand.

Tadeusz Borowski, “Auschwitz, Our Home (A Letter)”

Tagged

Beautiful Sentences: Martha Gellhorn

You never even stopped to notice the dead; they weren’t men any more They lay along the roads, in the fields, in the streets of villages, under the trees, like old dirty laundry sacks, nothing, just dead. You never knew how much of nothing dying was until you saw the shapeless, nameless, meaningless dead.

Martha Gellhorn, Point of No Return.

Tagged