He does something to me, that boy. Every time. It’s his only detriment. He steps on my heart. He makes me cry.
A DEFINITION NOT FOUND IN THE DICTIONARY Not leaving: an act of trust and love,often deciphered by children
She leaned down and looked at his lifeless face and Leisel kissed her best friend, Rudy Steiner, soft and true on his lips. He tasted dusty and sweet. He tasted like regret in the shadows of trees and in the glow of the anarchist's suit collection. She kissed him long and soft, and when she pulled herself away, she touched his mouth with her fingers...She did not say goodbye. She was incapable, and after a few more minutes at his side, she was able to tear herself from the ground. It amazes me what humans can do, even when streams are flowing down their faces and they stagger on...
If only she could be so oblivious again, to feel such love without knowing it, mistaking it for laughter.
She looks at the swings, and I can see she’s imagining what they’d look like if the kids weren’t there. The guilt of this holds her down momentarily. It appears to be there constantly. Never far away, despite her love for them.I realize that nothing belongs to her anymore and she belongs to everything.
Why can’t the world hear? I ask myself. Within a few moments I ask it many times. Because it doesn’t care, I finally answer, and I know I’m right. It’s like I’ve been chosen. But chosen for what? I ask.
There are so many moments to remember and sometimes I think that maybe we're not really people at all. Maybe moments are what we are.... Sometimes I just survive. But sometimes I stand on the rooftop of my existence, arms stretched out, begging for more.
Usually we walk around constantly believing ourselves. I'm okay we say. I'm alright. But sometimes the truth arrives on you and you can't get it off. That's when you realize that sometimes it isn't even an answer--it's a question. Even now, I wonder how much of my life is convinced.
Very quickly, very suddenly, words fell through my mind. They landed on the floor of my thoughts, and in there, down there, I started to pick the words up. They were excerpts of truth gathered from inside me.
I'd seen glimpses of a different me. It was a different me because in those increments of time I thought I actually became a winner.The truth, however, is painful.It was a truth that told me with a scratching internal brutality that I was me, and that winning wan't natural for me. It had to be fought for, in the echoes and trodden footprints of my mind. In a way, I had to scavenge for moments of alrightness.
I stood there and stared, into the sky and at the city around me. I stood, hands at my side, and I saw what had happened to me and who I was and the way things would always be for me. Truth. There was no more wishing, or wondering. I knew who I was, and what I would always do. I believed it, as my teeth touched and my eyes were overrun.
As we walk back, it feels like the city is engulfing us. Adrenalin still pours through our veins. Sparks flow through to our fingers. We've still been running in the mornings, but the city's different then. It's filled with hope and with bristles of winter sunshine. In the evening, it's like it dies, waiting to be born again the next morning.
A small but noteworthy note. I've seen so many young men over the years who think they're running at other young men. They are not. They are running at me.
His soul sat up. It met me. Those kinds of souls always do - the best ones. The ones who rise up and say I know who you are and I am ready. Not that I want to go, of course, but I will come. Those souls are always light because more of them have been put out. More of them have already found their way to other places.
I carried [Rudy] softly through the broken street...with him I tried a little harder [at comforting]. I watched the contents of his soul for a moment and saw a black-painted boy calling the name Jesse Owens as he ran through an imaginary tape. I saw him hip-deep in some icy water, chasing a book, and I saw a boy lying in bed, imagining how a kiss would taste from his glorious next-door neighbor. He does something to me, that boy. Every time. It's his only detriment. He steps on my heart. He makes me cry.
Together, they would watch everything that was so carefully planned collapse, and they would smile at the beauty of destruction.
I wanted to explain that I am constantly overestimating and underestimating the human race - that rarely do I even simply estimate it. I wanted to ask her how the same thing could be so ugly and so glorious, and its words and stories so damning and brilliant...I AM HAUNTED BY HUMANS.
On many counts, taking a boy like Rudy Steiner was robbery--so much life, so much to live for--yet somehow, I'm certain he would have loved to see the frightening rubble and the swelling of the sky on the night he passed away. He'd have cried and turned and smiled if only he could have seen the book thief on her hands and knees, next to his decimated body. He'd have been glad to witness her kissing his dusty, bomb-hit lips.Yes, I know it.In the darkness of my dark-beating heart, I know. He'd have loved it all right.You see?Even death has a heart.
A SMALL PIECE OF TRUTHI do not carry a sickle or scythe.I only wear a hooded black robe when it's cold.And I don't have those skull-like facial features you seem to enjoy pinning on me from a distance. You want to know what I truly look like? I'll help you out. Find yourself a mirror while I continue.
A human doesn't have a heart like mine. The human heart is a line, whereas my own is a circle, and I have the endless ability to be in the right place at the right time. The consequence of this is that I'm always finding humans at their best and worst. I see their ugly and their beauty, and I wonder how the same thing can be both. Still, they have one thing I envy. Humans, if nothing else, have the good sense to die.
It was a year for the ages, like 79, like 1346, to name just a few. Forget the scythe, Goddamn it, I needed a broom or a mop. And I needed a vacation.
I could introduce myself properly, but it's not really necessary. You will know me well enough and soon enough, depending on a diverse range of variables. It suffices to say that at some point in time, I will be standing over you, as genially as possible. Your soul will be in my arms. A color will be perched on my shoulder. I will carry you gently away.
They say that war is death's best friend, but I must offer you a different point of view on that one. To me, war is like the new boss who expects the impossible. He stands over your shoulder repeating one thin, incessantly: 'Get it done, get it done.' So you work harder. You get the job done. The boss, however, does not thank you. He asks for more.
A halo surrounded the grim reaper nun, Sister Maria. (By the way-I like this human idea of the grim reaper. I like the scythe. It amuses me.)
for some reason, dying men always ask the question they know the answer to. perhaps it's so they can die being right.
Grimly, she realized that clocks don't make a sound that even remotely resembles ticking, tocking. It was more the sound of a hammer, upside down, hacking methodically at the earth. It was the sound of a grave.
Summer came.For the book thief, everything was going nicely.For me, the sky was the color of Jews.When their bodies had finished scouring for gaps in the door, their souls rose up. When their fingernails had scratched at the wood and in some cases were nailed into it by the sheer force of desperation, their spirits came toward me, into my arms, and we climbed out of those shower facilities, onto the roof and up, into eternity's certain breadth. They just kept feeding me. Minute after minute. Shower after shower.