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“You think it will never happen to you, that it cannot happen to you, that you are the only person in the world to whom none of these things will ever happen, and then, one by one, they all begin to happen to you, in the same way they happen to everyone else. Your bare feet on the cold floor as you climb out of bed and walk to the window. You are six years old. Outside, snow is falling, and the branches of the trees in the backyard are turning white. Speak now before it is too late, and then hope to go on speaking until there is nothing more to be said. Time is running out, after all. Perhaps it is just as well to put aside your stories for now and try to examine what it has felt like to live inside this body from the first day you can remember being alive until this one. A catalogue of sensory data. What one might call a phenomenology of breathing. ”—Paul Auster, Winter Journal, 2012
Prisons: The Writer Paul Auster Visiting Secondigliano ! http://newish.info/179164-prisons-the-writer-paul-auster-visiting-secondigliano
“Every life is inexplicable, I kept telling myself. No matter how many facts are told, no matter how many details are given, the essential thing resists telling…..We imagine the real story inside the words, and to do this we substitute ourselves for the person in the story, pretending that we can understand him because we understand ourselves. This is a deception.”—Paul Auster, The Locked Room (The New York Trilogy)
“..isn’t it intriguing that thought cannot exist without language, and since language is a function of the brain, we would have to say that language-the ability to experience the world through symbols-is in some sense a physical property of human beings, which proves that the old mind-body duality is so much nonsense, doesn’t it? Adieu, Descartes. The mind and the body are one.”— Paul Auster-Invisible.
“Le simple fait d'errer dans le désert n'implique pas l'existence de la terre promise. The simple act of wandering in the desert does not mean the existence of the promised land. La discrétion a ses mérites, mais une surdose peut être mortelle. Discretion has its merits, but an overdose can be fatal. Paul Auster”—
“Try to roll with the punches. Keep your chin up. Don’t take any wooden nickels. Vote Democrat in every election. Ride your bike in the park. Dream about my perfect, golden body. Take your vitamins. Drink eight glasses of water a day. Pull for the Mets. Watch a lot of movies. Don’t work too hard at your job. Take a trip to Paris with me. (...) Brush your teeth after every meal. Don’t cross the street on a red light. Defend the little guy. Stick up for yourself. Remember how beautiful you are. Remember how much I love you. Drink one Scotch on the rocks every day. Breathe deeply. Keep your eyes open. Stay away from fatty foods. Sleep the sleep of the just. Remember how much I love you.”—
Nathan Glass, “The Brooklyn Follies” - Paul Auster
This is lovely. Best piece of advice I read in a book in a while.