Quote IconSo then you started reading the bible?" I asked. "Yes. We would eat chocolates and smoke cigarettes and read the bible, which is the only way to do it, if you ask me. Don, the bible is so good with chocolate. I always thought the bible was more of a salad thing, you know, but it isn’t. It is a chocolate thing.

Blue Like Jazz, Donald Miller

Quote IconHe could still hear his father’s voice. —When you kick out for yourself, Stephen—as I daresay you will one of these days—remember, whatever you do, to mix with gentle-men. When I was a young fellow I tell you I enjoyed myself. I mixed with fine decent fellow. Everyone of us could do something. One fellow had a good voice, another fellow was a good actor, another could sing a good comic song, another was a good oarsman or a good racket player, another could tell a good story and so on. We kept the ball rolling anyhow and enjoyed ourselves and saw a bit of life and we were none the worse of it either. But we were all gentlemen, Stephen—at least I hope we were—and bloody good honest Irishmen too. That’s the kind of fellows I want you to associate with, fellows of the right kidney. I’m talking to you as a friend, Stephen. I don’t believe a son should be afraid of his father. No, I treat you as your grandfather treated me she I was a young chap. We were more like brothers than father and son. I’ll never forget the first day he caught me smoking. I was standing at the end of the South Terrace one day with some maneens like myself and sure we thought we were grand fellows because we had pipes stuck in the corners of our mouths. Suddenly the governor passed. He didn’t say a word, or stop even. But the next day, Sunday, we were out for a walk together and when we were coming home he took out his cigar case and said: —By the by, Simon I didn’t know you smoked, or something like that. Of course I tried to carry it off as best I could. —If you want a good smoke, he said, try one of these cigars. An american captain made me a present of them last night in Queenstown.* Stephen heard his father’s voice break into a laugh which was almost a sob.

James Joyce, A Portrait of The Artist as A Young Man

Quote IconEternity! O, dread and dire word. Eternity! What mind of man can understand it? And remember, it is an eternity of pain. Even though the pains of hell were not so terrible as they are yet they would become infinite as they are destined to last for ever. But while they are everlasting they are at the same time, as you know, intolerably intense, unbearably extensive. To bear even the sting of an insect for all eternity would be a dreadful torment. What must it be, then, to bear the manifold tortures of hell for ever. For ever! For all eternity! Not for a year or for an age but for ever. Try to imagine the awful meaning of this. You have often seen the sand on the seashore. How fine are its tiny grains! And how many of this tiny little grains go to make up the small handful which a child grasps in its play. Now imagine a mountain of that sand, a million miles high, reaching from the earth to the farthest heavens, and a million miles broad, extending to remotest space, and a million miles in thickness: and imagine such an enormous mass of countless part ices of sand multiplied as often as there are leaves in the forest, drops of water in the mighty ocean, feathers on birds, scales on fish, hairs on animals, atoms in the vast expanse of the air: and imagine that at the end of every million years a little bird came to that mountain and carried away in its beak a tiny grain of that sand. How many millions upon millions of centuries would pass before that bird had carried away even a square foot of that mountain, how many eons upon eons of ages before it had carried away all Yet at the end of that immense stretch of time not even one instant of eternity could be said to have ended. At the end of all those billions and trillions of years eternity would have scarcely begun. And if that mountain rose again after it had been all carried away and if the bird came again and carried it all away again grain by grain: and if it so rose and sank as many times as there are stars in the sky, atoms in the, drops of water in the sea, leaves on the trees, feathers upon birds, scales upon fish, hairs upon animals, at the end of all those innumerable risings and sinkings of that immeasurably vast mountain not one single instant of eternity could be said to have ended; even then, at the end of such a period, after that eon of time the mere thought of which makes our very brain reel dizzily, eternity would have scarcely begun.

James Joyce, A Portrait of The Artist as A Young Man

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The way the river flows.

It’s amazing how one man can give you an instrument, and because of your affinities with that instrument, and the opportunities God gives you, your life is marked forever.