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Nicole Krauss

He spoke of human solitude, of the intrinsic loneliness of a sophisticated mind, one that’s capable of reason and poetry, but which grasps at straws when it comes to understanding another, A mind aware of the impossibility of absolute understanding.. The difficulty of having a mind that understands that it’ll never be understood. — Nicole… Continue reading Nicole Krauss

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American Literature · Classic · Collection · Contemporary · German-American Culture · Poetry

Lisel Mueller

Sometimes, When the Light Sometimes, when the light strikes at odd angles and pulls you back into childhood and you are passing a crumbling mansion completely hidden behind old willows or an empty convent guarded by hemlocks and giant firs standing hip to hip, you know again that behind that wall, under the uncut hair… Continue reading Lisel Mueller

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Collection · Commentary · Excerpt · Passage · Poetry · Polish Culture · Polish Literature

Adam Zagajewski

Remember the moments when we were together in a white room and the curtain fluttered. Return in thought to the concert where music flared. You gathered acorns in the park in autumn and leaves eddied over the earth’s scars. Praise the mutilated world and the gray feather a thrush lost, and the gentle light that… Continue reading Adam Zagajewski

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American Literature · Classic · Contemporary · Excerpt · Historical Fiction · Holocaust · Jewish Culture · Jewish Literature · Paraphrase · Passage · Quote · War · World War II

Jonathan Safran Foer

From space, astronauts can see people making love as a tiny speck of light. Not light, exactly, but a glow that could be mistaken for light–a coital radiance that takes generations to pour like honey through the darkness to the astronaut’s eyes. In about one and a half centuries–after the lovers who made the glow… Continue reading Jonathan Safran Foer

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American Culture · American Literature · Classic · Collection · Excerpt · Fragment · Language Driven Poetry · Poetry

Richard Jackson

Suddenly it seems memory is impossible. Who can say what fills the coffin of the moment? Are we, then, like moths at a candle, glowing longer than life is left in us? I don’t know how much longer it is possible to stay in a poem like this one, sifting through the ashes of the… Continue reading Richard Jackson

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American Culture · American Literature · Americana · Classic · Excerpt · Fiction · Paraphrase · Passage · Quote · Southern Gothic

Truman Capote

Dolly said that when she was a girl she’d liked to wake up winter mornings and hear her father singing as he went about the house building fires; after he was old, after he’d died, she sometimes heard his songs in the field of Indian grass. Wind, Catherine said; and Dolly told her: But the… Continue reading Truman Capote

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American Culture · American Literature · Classic · Collection · Contemporary · Excerpt · Passage · Poetry

Kate Daniels

Until it’s over each day unfolds, un- evenly, the way the hand-dipped candle flames: first, the brief explosion of the struck match and the tall bright burning down of wick. Then long periods of steady flaming. But every now and then the light stabs upward into farther reaches of darkness and shows the shape of… Continue reading Kate Daniels

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