--Jonathan Safran Foer, Everything Is Illuminated
“We cannot turn away,” Miss Woolf told her, “we must get on with our job and we must bear witness.” What did that mean, Ursula wondered. “It means,” Miss Woolf said, “that we must remember these people when we are safely in the future.”
“And if we are killed?”
“Then others must remember us.”
--Kate Atkinson, Life After Life
You can't blame me. I mean that literally. You're incapable of blaming me. You're human. Being human is choosing freedom over imprisonment, autonomy over dependency, liberty over servitude. You can't blame me because you know (come on, man, you've always known) that the idea of spending eternity with nothing to do except praise God is utterly unappealing. You'd be catatonic after an hour. Heaven's a swiz because to get in you have to leave yourself outside. You can't blame me because -- now do please be honest with yourself for once -- you'd have left, too.
--Glen Duncan, I, Lucifer
I couldn't help wondering if that was what God put me on Earth for--to find out how much a man could take without breaking.
--Kurt Vonnegut, Breakfast Of Champions
“Hector had no virtue?”
“Of course he did. He won all his battles, till the last one.”
“We all do,” Aeneas remarked.
--Ursula K. Le Guin, Lavinia
If you could remember every last time, you'd never stop grieving.
--Jonathan Tropper, This Is Where I Leave You