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‘”Abollah?”

“Yes.”

“When I grow up, will I live with you?”

Abdullah watched the orange sun dropping low, nudging the horizon. “If you want. But you won’t want to.”

“Yes I will!”

“You’ll want a house of your own.”

“But we can be neighbors.”

“Maybe.”

“You won’t live far.”

“What if you get sick of me?”

She jabbed his side with her elbow. “I wouldn’t!”

Abdullah grinned to himself. “All right, fine.”

“You’ll be close by.”

“Yes.”

“Until we’re old.”

“Very old.”

“For always.”

“Yes, for always.”

From the front of the wagon, she turned to look at him. “Do you promise, Abollah?”

“For always and always.”‘

Khaled Hosseini, And the Mountains Echoed

 

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“The people of these regions [of sub-Saharan Africa] have been told so often that they are poor and powerless that they do not recognize the abundance surrounding them. Thus they can be persuaded by unscrupulous companies in league with corrupt national and local politicians to sell what they “own” for a fraction of its actual value. Even were they to embrace a new agenda that put the earth at its center, Africans might find that they cannot reach their goals because the resources (or the technologies needed to access those resources) are not available to them. It’s as if someone is being swept along in the current of the river, and you are on the riverbank telling her that if she calmed down and thought for a second, she’d be able to help herself by swimming to the bank and not drowning. But the current is getting stronger, and getting stronger; she is panicking and fighting the current, and as a result only increasing her chances that she will drown.”

Wangari Maathai, Replenishing the Earth

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“Change can be accommodated by any system depending on its rate, Crake used to say. Touch your head to a wall, nothing happens, but if the same head hits the wall at ninety miles an hour, its red paint. We’re in a speed tunnel, Jimmy. When the water’s moving faster than the boat, you can’t control the thing.”

Margaret Atwood, Oryx and Crake

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“In that hideous water, bodies floated past. Some were alive, calling out. A searchlight revealed a boy halfway up the anchor chain of a battle ship. Sailors dumped oil on him and he slipped back into the water. 

On the deck of the ship, three new French citizens looked back at the burning city, ablaze from end to end. The fire would continue for the next three days, the flames visible for fifty miles. At sea, sailors would mistake the rising smoke for a gigantic mountain range. In the country they were headed for, America, the burning of Smyrna made the front pages for a day or two, before being bumped off by the Hall-Mills murder case (the body of Hall, a Protestant minister, had been found with that of Miss Mills, an attractive choir member) and the opening of the World Series.”

Jeffrey Eugenides, Middlesex