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The Lovely Bones › Quotes

The Lovely Bones Quotes

Sometimes the dreams that come true are the dreams you never even knew you had.
Nothing is ever certain.
Murderers are not monsters, they're men. And that's the most frightening thing about them.
These were the lovely bones that had grown around my absence: the connections-sometimes tenuous, sometimes made at great cost, but often magnificent-that happened after I was gone. And I began to see things in a way that let me hold the world without me in it. The events that my death wrought were merely the bones of a body that would become whole at some unpredictable time in the future. The price of what I came to see as this miraculous body had been my life.
Inside the snow globe on my father's desk, there was a penguin wearing a red-and-white-striped scarf. When I was little my father would pull me into his lap and reach for the snow globe. He would turn it over, letting all the snow collect on the top, then quickly invert it. The two of us watched the snow fall gently around the penguin. The penguin was alone in there, I thought, and I worried for him. When I told my father this, he said, "Don't worry, Susie; he has a nice life. He's trapped in a perfect world.
Each time I told my story, I lost a bit, the smallest drop of pain. It was that day that I knew I wanted to tell the story of my family. Because horror on Earth is real and it is every day. It is like a flower or like the sun; it cannot be contained.
Our only kiss was like an accident- a beautiful gasoline rainbow.
Because horror on Earth is real and it is every day. It is like a flower or like the sun; it cannot be contained.
Between a man and a woman there was always one person who was stronger than the other one. That doesn’t mean the weaker one doesn’t love the stronger.
Sometimes you cry, Susie, even when someone you love has been gone a long time.
This is just a temporary hell, not a permanent one.
Loss could be used as a measure of beauty in a woman.
You look invincible,' my mother said one night. I loved these times, when we seemed to feel the same thing. I turned to her, wrapped in my thin gown, and said: I am.
When the dead are done with the living, the living can go on to other things," Franny said. "What about the dead?" I asked. "Where do we go?.
And my sister, my Lindsey, left me in her memories, where I was meant to be.
I fell in love with you again; While you were away - Jack Salmon.
If I had but an hour of love,if that be all that is given me,an hour of love upon this earth,I would give my love to thee.
His love for my mother wasn't about looking back and loving something that would never change. It was about loving my mother for everything -- for her brokenness and her fleeing, for her being there right then in that moment before the sun rose and the hospital staff came in. It was about touching that hair with the side of his fingertip, and knowing yet plumbing fearlessly the depths of her ocean eyes.
Now I am in the place I call this wide wide Heaven because it includes all my simplest desires but also the most humble and grand. The word my grandfather uses is comfort. So there are cakes and pillows and colors galore, but underneath this more obvious patchwork quilt are places like a quiet room where you can go and hold someone's hand and not have to say anything. Give no story. Make no claim. Where you can live at the edge of your skin for as long as you wish.
The stains could be seen only in the sunlight, so Ruth was never really aware of them until later, when she would stop at an outdoor cafe for a cup of coffee, and look down at her skirt and see the dark traces of spilled vodka or whiskey. The alcohol had the effect of making the black cloth blacker. This amused her; she had noted in her journal: 'booze affects material as it does people'.
The dead are never exactly seen by the living, but many people seem acutely aware of something changed around them. They speak of a chill in the air. The mates of the deceased wake from dreams and see a figure standing at the end of thier bed, or in a doorway, or boarding, phantomlike, a city bus.
And in a small house five miles away was a man who held my mud-encrusted charm bracelet out to his wife. Look what I found at the old industrial park," he said. "A construction guy said they were bulldozing the whole lot. They're afraid of sink holes like that one that swallowed the cars." His wife poured him some water from the sink as he fingered the tiny bike and the ballet shoe, the flower basket and the thimble. He held out the muddy bracelet as she set down his glass. This little girl's grown up by now," she said. Almost. Not quite. I wish you all a long and happy life.
The living deserve attention, too.
Where’d you go on us?.
There was one thing my murderer didn't understand; he didn't understand how much a father could love his child.
There’s no condition one adjusts to so quickly as a state of war.
He had been my almost. My might-have-been. I was afraid of what I wanted most - His kiss. Still, I collected kiss stories. -Susie Salmon.
But she was waiting patiently. She no longer believed in talk. It never rescued anything. At seventy she had come to believe in time alone.
Last night it had been my father who had finally said it: "She’s never coming home." A clear and easy piece of truth that everyone who had ever known me had accepted. But he needed to say it, and she needed to hear him say it.
She sat in her room on the couch my parents had given up on and worked on hardening herself. Take deep breaths and hold them. Try to stay still for longer and longer periods of time. Make yourself small and like a stone. Curl the edges of yourself up and fold them under where no one can see. ~pg 29, Susie's sister Lindsey dealing with grief.
People grow up by living.
She liked to imagine that when she passed, the world looked after her, but she also knew how anonymous she was. Except when she was at work, no one knew where she was at any time of day and no one waited for her. It was immaculate anonymity.
I was in the air around him. I was in the cold mornings he had now. I was in the quiet time he spent alone. I was the girl he had chosen to kiss. He wanted, somehow to set me free. -Susie Salmon.
All you have to do is desire it, and if you desire it enough and understand why -- really know -- it will come.
I knew something as I watched: almost everyone was saying goodbye to me. I was becoming one of the many little-girl-losts. They would go back to their homes and put me to rest, a letter from the past never to be reopened or reread. And I could say goodbye to them, wish them well, bless them somehow for their good thoughts. A handshake in the street, a dropped item picked up and retrieved and handed back, or a friendly wave from the distant window, a nod, a smile, a moment when the eyes lock over the antics of a child.
Murder had a blood red door on the other side of which was everything unimaginable to everyone.
Do you miss Susie?" Because it was dark, because Ruth was facing away from her,because Ruth was almost a stranger, Lindsey said what she felt. "More than anyone will ever know.
There was our father, the heart we knew held all of us. Held us heavily and desperately, the doors of his heart opening and closing with the rapidity of stops on an instrument, the quiet felt closures, the ghostly fingering, practice and practice and then, incredibly, sound and melody and warmth.
As she brought prospective buyers through, the realtor said it was an oil stain, but it was me, seeping out of the bag.
He had a moment of clarity about how life should be lived: not as a child or as a woman. They were the two worst things to be.
I wish you all a long and happy life.
Every day a question mark.
Almost everyone in heaven has someone on Earth they watch, a loved one, a friend or even a stranger who was once kind, who offered warm food or a bright smile when one of us had needed it. And when I wasn’t watching I could hear the others talking to those they loved on Earth: just as fruitlessly as me, I’m afraid. A one-sided card cajoling and coaching of the young, a one way loving and desiring of their mates, a single-sided card that could never get signed.
How could it be that you could love someone so much and keep it secret from yourself as you woke daily so far from home?.
At fourteen my sister sailed away from me into a place I'd never been. In the walls of my sex there was horror and blood, in the walls of hers there were windows.
Out loud I said I had two children. Silently I said three. I always felt like apologizing to her for that.
Well, as my dad would say, it means she’s out of this shithole.
The alcohol had the effect of making the black cloth blacker. This amused her; she had noted in her journal: "booze affects material as it does people.
She didn't even have to smile, and she rarely did outside her house--it was the eyes, her dancer's carriage, the way she seemed to deliberate over the smallest movement of her body.
Before, they had never found themselves broken together. Usually, it was one needing the other but not both needing each other, and so there had been a way, by touching, to borrow from the stronger one's strength.
What I think was hardest for me to realize was that he had tried each time to stop himself. He had killed animals, taking lesser lives to keep from killing a child.
He took the hat from my mouth. ''Tell me you love me'', he said. Gently I did. The end came anyway.
I watched my beautiful sister running . . . and I knew she was not running away from me or toward me. Like someone who has survived a gut-shot, the wound had been closing, closing - braiding into a scar for eight long years.
In the midst of your failure, you were slowly building the life that you wanted anyway.
He would find his Susie,inside his young son. Give that love to the living.
Please don't let Daddy die Susie," he whispered. "I need him.
Everyday he got up. Before sleep wore off, he was who he used to be. Then, as his consciousness woke, it was as if poison seeped in. At first he couldn't even get up. He lay there under a heavy weight. But then only movment could save him, and he moved and he moved and he moved, no movement being enough to make up for it. The guilt on him, the hand of God pressing down on him, saying, You were not there when your daughter needed you.
He was beginning to understand: You were treated special and, later, something horrible would be told to you.
Like snowflakes,' Franny said,'none of them the same and yet each one, from where we stand, exactly like the one before.
He tunneled into stories where weak men changed into strong half-animals or used eye beams or magic hammers to power through steel or climb up the sides of skyscrapers. He was the Hulk when angry and Spidey the rest of the time. When he felt his heart hurt he turned into something stronger than a little boy, and he grew up this way. A heart that flashed from heart to stone, heart to stone. As I watched I thought of what Grandma Lynn liked to say when Lindsey and I rolled our eyes or grimaced behind her back. "Watch out what faces you make. You'll freeze that way.
These things, she felt, were not to be passed around like disingenuous party favors. She kept an honor code with her journals and her poems. 'Inside, inside,' she would whisper quietly to herself when she felt the urge to tell...
Hold still," my father would say, while I held the ship in the bottle and he burned away the strings he'd raised the mast with and set the clipper ship free on its blue putty sea. And I would wait for him, recognizing the tension of that moment when the world in the bottle depended, solely, on me.
When the music stopped, it could have been forever since we'd begun. My grandfather took a step back, and the light grew yellow at his back. 'I'm going,' he said. 'Where?' I asked. 'Don't worry, sweetheart. You're so close.' He turned and walked away, disappearing rapidly into spots and dust. Infinity.
My grandmother stepped back into the kitchen to get their drinks. I had come to love her more after death than I ever had on Earth. I wish I could say that in that moment in the kitchen she decided to quit drinking, but I now saw that drinking was a part of what made her who she was. If the worst of what she left on Earth was a legacy of inebriated support, it was a good legacy in my book. ~Susie's grandmother, Lynn pgs 315-316.
Once released from life, having lost it in such violence, I couldn’t calculate my steps. I didn’t have time for contemplation. In violence it is the getting out that you concentrate on. When you begin to go over the edge, life receding from you as a boat recedes inevitably from the shore, you hold on to death tightly, like a rope that will transport you, and you swing out on it, hoping to land away from where you are.