Ownership and Mortality

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“We are like a bunch of dogs squirting on fire hydrants. We poison the groundwater with our toxic piss, marking everything MINE in a ridiculous attempt to survive our deaths.”

-The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

 

Love and Oblivion

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“I’m in love with you, and I’m not in the business of denying myself the simple pleasure of saying true things. I’m in love with you, and I know that love is just a shout into the void, and that oblivion is inevitable, and that we’re all doomed and that there will come a day when all our labor has been returned to dust, and I know the sun will swallow the only earth we’ll ever have, and I am in love with you.”

-The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

 

Memories as Jewels

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At times like this her grief hovered in the room like a dark winged creature. She squeezed her eyes shut and remembered Meg saying to her, Find a favorite memory, and run it through your mind. When you lose someone, you have to find new ways to feel close. Meg used to say her memories were her jewels to keep forever.

Summer of The Wolves by Polly Carlson-Voiles

Purpose of Sentience

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“That’s what I believe. I believe the universe wants to be noticed. I think the universe is improbably biased toward consciousness, that it rewards intelligence in part because the universe enjoys its elegance being observed. And who am I, living in the middle of history, to tell the universe that it—or my observation of it—is temporary?”

“I thought of my dad telling me that the universe wants to be noticed. But what we want is to be noticed by the universe, to have the universe give a shit what happens to us—not the collective idea of sentient life but each of us, as individuals.”

-The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

Feel the Earth

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Ian really dazzled them when he said the rock itself was 2.7 billion years old. Billion with a B. She felt like a moth or an otter on this ancient rock and wondered how humans had got to thinking they were so important, with their bad TV and endless malls, when this rock had been here almost since the beginning of time. Ian had been saying that wild places are important because there’s no other way to know completely about how deep nature is except to lie on a rock like this, listen to water slapping the shore, watch dragonflies patrolling, and to smell deep down what the earth has always been. Now she understood.”

Summer of The Wolves by Polly Carlson-Voiles

Take The Land, Leave The Name

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“The Hotel Filosoof?” I said. And he said, “You are Americans?”

“Yes,” Mom said. “We’re from Indiana.”

“Indiana,” he said. “They steal the land from the Indians and leave the name, yes?”

“Something like that,” Mom said.

-The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

The Reactions of Children

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“So, Nika, what grade are you in?” she asked, glancing at Nika before beginning a careful inspection of her polished nails. “Oh, that varies from year to year,” Nika answered, politely smiling but suddenly getting up and heading for the kitchen.”

After they finished eating, Thomas said, “Dad said meet him at the dock,” and the boys rushed out as if it were a rule that boys in a group must run.

Summer of The Wolves by Polly Carlson-Voiles

A Sense of Freedom

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She felt something well up inside, strength, a wildness, a new sense of being alive. A sense of freedom, like none of the hard things in her past could reach her now.

Summer of The Wolves by Polly Carlson-Voiles

Northern Lights

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Each time one section of the northern sky faded, another tumbled with new light shapes. “Wow,” Randall whispered. It was like being in church, Nika thought, or an art museum. You whispered because voices would disturb the beauty.”

Summer of The Wolves by Polly Carlson-Voiles