what she read :: tender is the night

I’ve been on quite the reading kick lately.  I have finally made the transition from watching TV to reading books.  It’s been a long road.  But, now I have finally grasped how valuable books are.  I have learned so much more reading that I could have just watching crappy TV shows.

One of the things that I have been doing is writing down quotes that strike me when I’m reading.  So, with each book that I’ve finished recently, I’ll share those quotes.

First up, a novel from one of my favorite authors, F Scott Fitzgerald.  A story of Dick Diver, a psychologist, whose sanity is slowly destroyed through his marriage to a previous patient, Nicole.  It’s a story of love and loss.  I’m definitely not the sappy romantic type, but the intelligent writing of Fitzgerald makes this type of love story very bearable.

Plus, its settings are all over Europe.  Dick travels around so much during the story and is so cultured in each place that he is.  It made my traveling heart swoon even more over the book.

Here are some some things to ponder…

She liked to be active, though at times she gave an impression of repose that was once static and evocative. This was because she knew few words and believed in none, and in the world she was rather silent, contributing just to her share of urbane humor with a precision that approached meagerness. 
Their difference from so many American women lay in the fact that they were all happy to exist in a man’s world – they preserved their individuality through men and not by opposition to them. 
She did not know yet that the splendor is something in the heart; at that moment when she realized that and melted into the passion of the universe he could take her without question or regret. 
I am a women and my business is to hold things together. 
Standing in the station, with Paris in the back of them, it seemed as if they were vicariously leaning a little over the ocean, already undergoing a sea-change, a shifting about of atoms to form the essential molecule of a new people. 
It was a tradition between them that they should never be too tired for anything, and they found it made the days better on the whole and put the evenings more in order. When, inevitably, their spirits flagged they shifted the blame to the weariness and fatigue of others.
Sometimes it’s harder to deprive oneself of a pain than of a pleasure and the memory so possessed him that for the moment  there was nothing to do but to pretend. 
One writes of scars healed, a loose parallel to the pathology of the skin, but there is no such thing in the life of an individual. There are open wounds, shrunk sometimes to the size of a pin-prick but wounds still. The marks of suffering are more comparable to the loss of a finger, orthe sight of an eye. We may not miss them, either for one minute in a year, but if we should there is nothing to be done about it. 
A man is vulnerable only in his pride, but as delicate as humpty  dumpty once that is meddled with. 
Dick tried to dissect it into pieces small enough to store away – realizing the totality of a life may be different in quality from its segments, and also that life during the forties seemed capable of being observed only in segments. 
So delicately balanced was she between an old foothold that had always guaranteed her security, and the imminence of a leap from which she must alight changed in the very chemistry of blood and muscle, that she did not dare bring the matter into the true forefront of consciousness. 
Either you think- or else others have to think for you and take power from you, pervert and discipline your natural tastes, civilize and sterilize you.
The nameless fear which precedes all emotions, joyous or sorrowful, inevitable as a hum of thunder precedes a storm.


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