100 Memorable Quotes By Barbara Kingsolver, The Author Of The Poisonwood Bible
Novelist, Poet, Essayist
Annapolis, Maryland, United States
Barbara Kingsolver is a noted American writer. She attended DePauw University and then the University of Arizona, studying biology at both, before embarking on a career as a freelance writer. After a while, she started to work on becoming a novelist and eventually she found success when her first novel ‘The Bean Trees’, published in 1988. Kingsolver was born in 1955 in Maryland but when she was still only seven year old her family went to Congo and her experiences in the country was the inspiration behind her most famous novel ‘The Poisonwood Bible’. She has also written a widely read non-fiction book titled ‘Animal, Vegetable, Miracle’ that described the ways in which her family tried to eat locally. Her work draws heavily from themes such as social justice and human interaction, as well as biodiversity. A large percentage of her books have been on the New York Times Bestsellers List and it is no wonder that she is considered one of America’s top writers. Here are some of the famous quotes from Barbara Kingsolver, which will surely appeal to a curious mind.
The very least you can do in your life is figure out what you hope for. And the most you can do is live inside that hope. Not admire it from a distance but live right in it, under its roof. The friend who holds your hand and says the wrong thing is made of dearer stuff than the one who stays away. She kept swimming out into life because she hadn't yet found a rock to stand on. Listen. Slide the weight from your shoulders and move forward. You are afraid you might forget, but you never will. You will forgive and remember. Everything you're sure is right can be wrong in another place. But kids don't stay with you if you do it right. It's the one job where, the better you are, the more surely you won't be needed in the long run. God doesn’t need to punish us. He just grants us a long enough life to punish ourselves. Listen. To live is to be marked. To live is to change, to acquire the words of a story, and that is the only celebration we mortals really know. In perfect stillness, frankly, I've only found sorrow. I’ve seen how you can’t learn anything when you’re trying to look like the smartest person in the room. What I want is so simple I almost can't say it: elementary kindness. The changes we dread most may contain our salvation. I attempted briefly to consecrate myself in the public library, believing every crack in my soul could be chinked with a book. Close the door. Write with no one looking over your shoulder. Don't try to figure out what other people want to hear from you; figure out what you have to say. It's the one and only thing you have to offer. The power is in the balance: we are our injuries, as much as we are our successes. There is a strange moment in time, after something horrible happens, when you know it's true, but you haven't told anyone yet. A mother's body remembers her babies-the folds of soft flesh, the softly furred scalp against her nose. Each child has it's own entreaties to body and soul. In a world as wrong as this one, all we can do is make things as right as we can. Memory is a complicated thing, a relative to truth, but not its twin. It's what you do that makes your soul. Pain reaches the heart with electrical speed, but truth moves to the heart as slowly as a glacier. Misunderstanding is my cornerstone. It's everyone's, come to think of it. Illusions mistaken for truth are the pavement under our feet. The most important thing about a person is always the thing you don't know. It is true that I do not speak as well as I can think. But that is true of most people, as nearly as I can tell. If we can't, as artists, improve on real life, we should put down our pencils and go bake bread. The truth needs so little rehearsal. It's frightening when things you love appear suddenly changed from what you have always known. Sometimes the strength of motherhood is greater than natural laws. Sugar, it's no parade but you'll get down the street one way or another, so you'd just as well throw your shoulders back and pick up the pace. But I've swallowed my pride before, that's for sure. I'm practically lined with my mistakes on the inside like a bad-wallpapered bathroom. Your dreams, what you hope for and all that, it's not separate from your life. It grows right up out of it. Every betrayal contains a perfect moment, a coin stamped heads or tails with salvation on the other side. Humans can be fairly ridiculous animals. Memories do not always soften with time; some grow edges like knives. To live is to change, to acquire the words of a story, and that is the only celebration we mortals really know. How pointless life could be, what a foolish business of inventing things to love, just so you could dread losing them. No other continent has endured such an unspeakably bizarre combination of foreign thievery and foreign goodwill. Silence has many advantages. When you do not speak, other people presume you to be deaf or feeble-minded and promptly make a show of their own limitations. If you never stepped on anybody's toes, you never been for a walk. I lost a child," she said, meeting Lusa's eyes directly. "I thought I wouldn't live through it. But you do. You learn to love the place somebody leaves behind for you. Now I'm starting to think he wasn't supposed to be my whole life, he was just this doorway to me. A human being can be good or bad or right or wrong, maybe. But how can you say a person is illegal? You just can't. That's all there is to it. Thanks for this day, for all birds safe in their nests, for whatever this is, for life. If you want sweet dreams, you've got to live a sweet life. The death of something living is the price of our own survival, and we pay it again and again. We have no choice. It is the one solemn promise every life on earth is born and bound to keep. I'm of a fearsome mind to throw my arms around every living librarian who crosses my path, on behalf of the souls they never knew they saved. Last time I talked to her she didn't sound like herself. She's depressed. It's awful what happens when people run out of money. They start thinking they're
no good. I've about decided that's the main thing that separates happy people from the other people: the feeling that you're a practical item, with a use, like a sweater or a socket wrench. ...I stir in bed and the memories rise out of me like a buzz of flies from a carcass. I crave to be rid of them... Oh, mercy. If it catches you in the wrong frame of mind, the King James Bible can make you want to drink poison in no uncertain terms. Cooking is 80 percent confidence, a skill best acquired starting from when the apron strings wrap around you twice. Sadness is more or less like a head cold - with patience, it passes. Depression is like cancer. I had decided early on that if I couldn’t dress elegant, I’d dress memorable. If the Lord hasn't got a boyfriend lined up for me to marry, that's his business. When moral superiority combines with billowing ignorance, they fill up a hot-air balloon that's awfully hard not to poke. It's surprising how much memory is built around things unnoticed at the time. It's terrible to lose somebody, but it's also true that some people never have anybody to lose, and I think that's got to be so much worse. A choir of seedlings arching their necks out of rotted tree stumps, sucking life out of death. I am the forest's conscience, but remember, the forest eats itself and lives forever. It's the one thing we never quite get over: that we contain our own future. I thought: this is how life is, ridiculous beyond comprehension. Alice wonders if other women in the middle of the night have begun to resent their Formica. I thought I wouldn't live through it. But you do. You learn to love the place somebody leaves behind for you. Illusions mistaken for truth are the pavement under our feet. They are what we call civilization. ...nothing momentous comes in this world unless it comes on the shoulders of kindness. The conspicuous consumption of limited resources has yet to be accepted widely as a spiritual error, or even bad manners No matter what kind of night you're having, morning always wins. Hunger of the body is altogether different from the shallow, daily hunger of the belly. Those who have known this kind of hunger cannot entirely love, ever again, those who have not. Honk if you love Jesus, text while driving if you want to meet up. Value is not made of money, but a tender balance of expectation and longing. He was getting that look he gets, oh boy, like Here comes Moses tromping down off of Mount Syanide with ten fresh ways to wreck your life. For if there is any single thing that everyone hopes for most dearly, it must be this: that the youngest outlive the oldest. Every life is different because you passed this way and touched history. Poor Congo, barefoot bride of men who took her jewels and promised the Kingdom. We came from Bethlehem, Georgia bearing Betty Crocker cake mixes into the jungle. You can't really know the person standing before you, because always there is some missing piece Maybe he's been in Africa so long he has forgotten that we Christians have our own system of marriage, and it is called Monotony. Don't try to figure out what other people want to hear from you; figure out what you have to say. Mr. Shepherd, ye cannot stop a bad thought from coming into your head. But ye need not pull up a chair and bide it sit down." - Mrs. Brown A breeze shook rain out of new leaves onto their hair, but in their pursuit of eternity they never noticed the chill. When you're given a brilliant child you polish her and let her shine.
Pigs in Heaven You can curse the dead or pray for them, but don't expect them to do a thing for you. They're far too interested in watching us, to see what in heaven's name we will do next. I learned to write by reading the kind of books I wished I'd written. Will you explain to me why people encourage delusional behaviour in children, and medicate it in adults? The very least you can do in your life is to figure out what you hope for. The most you can do is live inside that hope, running down its hallways, touching the walls on both sides. Because I could not stop for death he kindly stopped for me, or paused at least to strike a glancing blow with his sky-blue mouth as he passed. What we lose in our great human exodus from the land is a rooted sense, as deep and intangible as religious faith, of why we need to hold on to the wild and beautiful places that once surrounded us. Friends, there is nothing like your own family to make you appreciate strangers! You see mother, you had no life of your own. They have no idea. One has only a life of one's own. If you can't dress expensive, dress memorable. The loudest sound on earth, she thought, is a man with nothing to do. Be careful what you give children, for sooner or later you are sure to get it back. How is it right to slip free of an old skin and walk away from the scene of the crime? We came, we saw, we took away and we left behind, we must be allowed our anguish and our regrets.
If you ask me, when something extraordinary shows up in your life in the middle of the night, you give it a name and make it the best home you can.
But children robbed of love will dwell on magic.
Lies are infinite in number, and the truth so small and singular.
This Forest eats itself and lives forever.
Science doesn't tell us what we should do. It only tells us what is.
The average food item on a U.S. grocery shelf has traveled farther than most families go on their annual vacations. I considered her my ally, because, like me, she was imperfect.