Important Quotations Explained
Sometimes we caught sight of tattered knee socks rounding a corner, or came upon them doubled over, shoving books into a cubbyhole, flicking the hair out of their eyes. But it was always the same: their white faces drifting in slow motion past us, while we pretended we hadn't been looking for them at all, that we didn't know they existed.
"Do we seem as crazy as everyone thinks?" "Who thinks that?" She didn't reply, only stuck her hand out the door to test for rain. "Cecilia was weird, but we're not." And then: "We just want to live. If anyone would let us."
but none of these signs of malnourishment or illness or grief detracted from Lux's overwhelming impression of being a carnal angel. They spoke of being pinned to the chimney as if by two great beating wings, and of the slight blond fuzz above her upper lip that felt like plumage. Her eyes shone, burned, intent on her mission as only a creature with no doubts as to either Creation's glory or its meaninglessness could be. The words the boys used, their shifty eyebrows, fright, bafflement, made it clear they had served as only the most insignificant footholds in Lux's ascent, and, in the end, even though they had been carried to the peak, they couldn't tell us what lay beyond.
After denuding the trunk, the men left to denude others, and for a time the tree stood blighted, trying to raise its stunted arms, a creature clubbed mute, only its sudden voicelessness making us realize it had been speaking all along.
It didn't matter in the end how old they had been, or that they were girls, but only that we had loved them, and that they hadn't heard us calling, still do not hear us, up here in the tree house, with our thinning hair and soft bellies, calling them out of those rooms where they went to be alone for all time, alone in suicide, which is deeper than death, and where we will never find the pieces to put them back together.
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