Posts tagged the history of love.
The History of Love by Nicole Krauss
Of course this has no credit. It’s from The History of Love by Nicole Krauss.
i think im in love with this
the last line shot chills down my spine
During the time I waited, a whole species of butterfly may have become extinct, or a large, complex mammal with feelings like mine.
from The History of Love by Nicole Krauss
Only after they charged him with the crime of silence did Babel discover how many kinds of silences existed. When he heard music he no longer listened to the notes, but the silences in between. When he read a book he gave himself over entirely to commas and semicolons, to the space after the period and before the capital letter of the next sentence. He discovered the places in a room where silence gathered; the folds of curtain drapes, the deep bowls of the family silver. When people spoke to him, he heard less and less of what they were saying, and more and more of what they were not. He learned to decipher the meaning of certain silences, which is like solving a tough case without any clues, with only intuition. And no one could accuse him of not being prolific in his chosen métier. Daily, he turned out whole epics of silence. In the beginning it had been difficult. Imagine the burden of keeping silent when your child asks you whether God exists, or the woman you love asks if you love her back. At first Babel longed for the use of just two words: Yes and No. But he knew that just to utter a single word would be to destroy the delicate fluency of silence.
Even after they arrested him and burned all of his manuscripts, which were blank pages, he refused to speak. Not even a groan when they gave him a blow to the head, a boot tip in the groin. Only at the last possible moment, as he faced the firing squad, did the writer Babel suddenly sense the possibility of his error. As the rifles were pointed at his chest he wondered if what he had taken for the richness of silence was really the poverty of never being heard. He had thought the possibilities of human silences were endless. But as the bullets tore from the rifles, his body was riddled with truth. And a small part of him laughed bitterly because, anyway, how could he have forgotten what he had always known: There’s no match for the silence of God.
The History of Love by Nicole Krauss
My heart is officially crushed.
pronounced as one word, not two, as in an eighth-note, followed by a quarter-note, followed by a whole note of silence. Always used as a sentence alone: I thought it was impossible. And-yet. Or: I was prepared to leave. And-yet. To say “and-yet” can be to say: There was a small, dissenting part of me, and despite its smallness it intervened, and that’s way I kept on when I wanted to give up. Or: They told me I would grow up to be handsome. And-yet. Meaning, I know the truth, of course I do, even if I can’t say it. “And-yet” can be a reminder of all that will go unsaid. Of a chance someone is holding out for. A door left open. It sounds like nyet, which means no in Russian. But “and-yet” is never so decisive or emphatic. It’s simply there to challenge, or at least hold up a light to, whatever came before, like a grammatical philosopher. Although always followed by a period, it’s tone and effect is similar to a question mark. In two syllables it can sum up the existential doubt that’s tied like a stone to each of us. It’s also Jewish. Da-da, da-da, da-DA-and THAT is why on Passover we always lean. And-yet. As in, let me answer your question with a question. As in, I’ve just spent half an hour explaining it to you like this, but I could have just as easily argued it like that. As in, there are fifty ways to interpret this, and if we can’t agree on anything else, at least we can agree on that (and if we can’t even agree on that, at least we can argue). “And-yet” guards against simple conclusions. “And-yet” says: Don’t get so comfortable no matter how much you have to eat today you might be hungry tomorrow and by the way there’s no such thing as black and white take it from me you should learn to sleep with one eye open. “And-yet” can sometimes be funny. It’s almost always bittersweet. But it’s never tragic; by the time there is time to say “and-yet,” the tragedy is already past. Which is to say, “and-yet” is almost always reflective. It was terrible. And-yet. As in, I’m still standing, there’s light in the morning, the smell of breakfast, what can I tell you, I suppose the world continues to turn.
By Nicole Krauss in The Future Dictionary of America