There was first the ferry boat moving softly out from the Jersey shore at dawn—the moment crystallized into my first symbol of New York. Five years later when I was fifteen, I went into the city from school to see Ina Claire in The Quaker Girl and Gertrude Bryan in Little Boy Blue. Confused by my hopeless and melancholy love for them both, I was unable to choose between them—so they blurred into one lovely entity, the girl. She was my second symbol of New York. The ferry boat stood for triumph, the girl for romance. In time I was to achieve some of both, but there was a third symbol that I have lost somewhere, and lost forever.
— from “My Lost City” featured in Lapham’s Quarterly Fall 2010 Issue: The City
Off topic: View from the Dakota apartment building on Central Park West, showing the difference between the haves and have-nots in New York City in 1890.
courtesy of: Ephemeral New York, http://ephemeralnewyork.wordpress.com/
Ursula K. Le Guin
This book is for my grandmother,
who wrote the most wonderful letters,
and for my mother, who taught me how to reply
—John Freeman, The Tyranny of E-mail
Who found the song
And gave me voice
—Michael Dorris, Cloud Chamber
for convincing me that everyone who is
interesting has a past
—Jeannette Walls, The Glass Castle
To the next generation of the Tribe McCourt …
Sing your song, dance your dance, tell your tale.
—Frank McCourt, Teacher Man
For my grandchildren
born and unborn
—John Le Carre, A Most Wanted Man
The Land of My Fathers
—Richard Llewellyn, How Green Was My Valley
To some ladies at Wattage
—C.S. Lewis, Perelandra
Not the book, for which you would have little use,
but the effort at understanding.
I enjoyed your company.
—Barry Lopez, Of Wolves and Men
—F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby
“The emptiness of Haber’s being, the effective nightmare, radiating outward from the dreaming brain, had undone connections. The continuity that had always held between the worlds or timelines of Orr’s dreaming had now been broken. Chaos had entered in. He had few and incoherent memories of this existence he was now in; almost all he knew came from the other memories, the other dreamtimes.”
Don DeLillo, from his interview with the PEN American Center
Congratulations to Don DeLillo, recipient of the Saul Bellow Award for Achievement in American Fiction from PEN American Center
“Here’s a stray question (or a metaphysical leap): Will language have the same depth and richness in electronic form that it can reach on the printed page? Does the beauty and variability of our language depend to an important degree on the medium that carries the words? Does poetry need paper?”
—Yankees 3B Alex Rodriguez after seeing The Social Network (via vintageanchor)