Sunday, August 09, 2009

Things that are true that I read in a book

This is a meme. It came from Mark Lawrence, and Kirsty (what started it), and Genevieve. Encountering truth in fiction, the kind of truth that gives me a shiver, is one of the greatest pleasures of my existence.

There are so few people given to us to love. I want to tell my daughters this, that each time you fall in love it is important, even at nineteen. Especially at nineteen. And if you can, at nineteen, count the people you love on one hand, you will not, at forty, have run out of fingers on the other. There are so few people given to us to love, and they all stick.
Anne Enright, The Gathering

In the old nursery rhyme, when the cat went to see the queen, he caught a little mouse under her chair; that was long long ago and the queen was different from our queen, but the mouse was the same.
Mice have always been the same.
Rumer Godden, The Mousewife

"If you're going to stop a band playing every time someone has an accident, you'll lead a very strenuous life."
Katherine Mansfield, The Garden Party


  1. I like this meme.
    I'm going to do it on my blog.

  2. Now I adore The Gathering and for the life of me can't remember that passage. Shame on me, it's perfect. And true.

    I'll do this too - one day! I also have a meme of Gen's I've been sitting on because I don't feel I've got it right yet.

  3. And I love the Garden Party and spent a summer once trying to adapt it into a screenplay, just for fun. And realised that it was well beyond me but it was worth it because it meant I spent weeks reading Katherine Mansfield.

    I'm going to borrow the meme too.

  4. Oh grouse selections.

    I knew that Gathering one but couldn't place it. Wonder if I've written it in my little book of choice bits. I love the others too.

    I bickered gently with Kirsty in my head about the fiction requirement. But these reinforce her requirements perfectly. (Shivers.)

  5. oh, katherine mansfield! joy!

    "What can you do if you are thirty and, turning the corner of your own street, you are overcome, suddenly by a feeling of bliss -- absolute bliss! -- as though you'd suddenly swallowed a bright piece of that late afternoon sun and it burned in your bosom, sending out a little shower of sparks into every particle, into every finger and toe? . . .
    Oh, is there no way you can express it without being "drunk and disorderly"? How idiotic civilisation is! Why be given a body if you have to keep it shut up in a case like a rare, rare fiddle? " -- Bliss