Wednesday, February 20, 2008

when there's nothing left to burn, you have to set yourself on fire...

The best thing, though, in that museum was that everything always stayed right where it was. Nobody'd move. You could go there a hundred thousand times, and that Eskimo would still be just finished catching those two fish, the birds would still be on their way south, the deers would still be drinking out of that water hole, with their pretty antlers and their pretty, skinny legs, and that squaw with the naked bosom would still be weaving that same blanket. Nobody'd be different. They only thing that would be different would be you. Not that you'd be so much older or anything. It wouldn't be that, exactly. You'd just be different, that's all. You'd have an overcoat on this time. Or the kid that was your partner in line last time had got scarlet fever and you'd have a new partner. Or you'd have a substitute taking the class, instead of Miss Aigletinger. Or you'd heard your mother and father having a terrific fight in the bathroom. Or you'd just passed by one of those puddles in the street with gasoline rainbows in them. I mean you'd be different in some way - I can't explain what I mean. And even if I could, I'm not sure I'd feel like it.

- JD Salinger, "The Catcher in the Rye"


Jamie said...

it's embarrassing to say this, but i've not read that book. you've stirred me to want to.

i'm so happy you blog. i'm really happy you did something with that picture of the birds in the trees. i'm mostly happy though, just to know ya buddy.

of all the people i've lived with, i feel like you were the one i lived with most fully. we used to co-habitate, but here we are, still living together.

holey socks said...

wow, makes me want to read it too.

i love your blog name, it makes me think of my favourite margaret atwood poem ever.


shivering in the almost-drizzle
inside the wooden outboard,
nose over gunwale,
I watched it drip and spread
on the sheenless water:

the brightest thing in wartime,
a slick of rainbow,
ephemeral as insect wings,
green, blue, red, and pink,
my shimmering private sideshow.

Was this my best toy, then?
This toxic smudge, this overspill
from a sloppy gascan filled
with the essence of danger?

I knew that it was poison,
it's beauty an illusion:
I could spell flammable.

But still, I loved the smell:
so alien, a whiff
of starstuff.

I would have like to drink it,
inhale its iridescence.
As if I could.
That's how gods lived: as if.

cayliedawn said...

i juuuuust read "catcher in the rye" last month. it's satisfying to read that quote and know where it fits in. it was one of my favorite parts of the book. my favorite part, though, was when holden was talking to that teacher or whoever about education. so good.

Cheecha85 said...

Bri, I really enjoy this quote. And I love the title of your new blog. Very good.