28 "Without A Trace" Quotes
"There are, by the most conservative counting, two grave and deeply regrettable collateral victims of the peer-review gruesome stratagem: one is the daring of thought (wished-washed to the lowest common denominator), and the other is the individuality, as well as the responsibility, of editors (those seeking shelter behind the anonymity of "peers", but in fact dissolved in it, in many cases without a trace)."
--- Zygmunt Bauman
"Every woman while she would be ready to die of shame if surprised in the act of generation, nonetheless carries her pregnancy without a trace of shame and indeed with a kind of pride. The reason is that pregnancy is in a certain sense a cancellation of the guilt incurred by coitus; thus coitus bears all the shame and disgrace of the affair, while pregnancy, which is so intimately associated with it, stays pure and innocent and is indeed to some extent sacred."
"They were not friends, Comdrade Pillai and Inspector Thomas Matthew, and they didn't trust each other. But they understood each other perfectly. They were both men whom childhood had abandoned without a trace. Men without curiosity. Without doubt. Both in their own way truly, terrifyingly, adult. They looked out into the world and never wondered how it worked, because they knew. They worked it. They were mechanics who serviced different parts of the same machine."
--- Arundhati Roy
"If tone is granted to be subjected to control, why not line also, which has equal emotional significance? And if line, why not shapes and forms? And if shapes and forms, why not allow elision or emphasis of detail? And if all these things are allowed, what becomes of the record of actuality ?... Sunk without a trace!"
"In this modern world of ours many people seem to think that science has somehow made such religious ideas as immortality untimely or old fashioned. I think science has a real surprise for the skeptics. Science, for instance, tells us that nothing in nature, not even the tiniest particle, can disappear without a trace. Nature does not know extinction. All it knows is transformation. If God applies this fundamental principle to the most minute and insignificant parts of His universe, doesn't it make sense to assume that He applies it to the masterpiece of His creation, the human soul?"
"Nature does not know extinction; all it knows is transformation. ... Everything science has taught me-and continues to teach me-strengthens my belief in the continuity of our spiritual existence after death. Nothing disappears without a trace."
"To set one's name to a work gives no one a title to be remembered, for who knows how many of the best of men have gone without a trace? The iniquity of oblivion blindly scatters her poppyseed and when wretchedness falls upon us one summer's day like snow, all we wish for is to be forgotten."
--- W. G. Sebald
"I don't want to name names because they'd be mad at me if I did, but people who are significant novelists can't get published by real publishers at this point, or have to go through two years of trying after writing a novel that's taken them five or six years and simply can't get the thing in print. Or it gets in print and it doesn't get reviewed in the New York Times Book Review and disappears without a trace. I mean, it's terrifying. I don't know how anybody can stand it. It's such an enormous amount of work and the economics of it are really quite brutal."
--- Tony Kushner
"Down there - he said - are people who will follow any dragon, worship any god, ignore any inequity. All out of a kind of humdrum, everyday badness. Not the really high, creative loathsomeness of the great sinners, but a sort of mass-produced darkness of the soul. Sin, you might say, without a trace of originality. They accept evil not because they say yes, but because they don't say no."
--- Terry Pratchett
"In nature nothing remains constant. Everything is in a perpetual state of transformation, motion, and change. However, we discover that nothing simply surges up out of nothing without having antecedents that existed before. Likewise, nothing ever disappears without a trace, in the sense that it gives rise to absolutely nothing existing in later times."
--- David Bohm
"Howard Altmann has found a way to make language transform itself. If the elusive moment between I and Thou could speak, it might be one of his quietly amazing lines-'you ask the silence to invert itself / like a gymnast in the dark . . . ' Without a trace of rhetoric, In This House reminds us of the power of poetry: to show us how to live in a world in which we are strangers. It's a thrill to come close to such an original and deeply realized art."
--- Dennis Nurkse
"My happiest hours are those in which I think nothing, want nothing, when I do not even dream, but lose myself in some spurious vegetable torpor, moss growing on the surface of life. Without a trace of bitterness I savour my absurd awareness of being nothing, a mere foretaste of death and extinction."
--- Fernando Pessoa
"What might be taken for a precocious genius is the genius of childhood. When the child grows up, it disappears without a trace. It may happen that this boy will become a real painter some day, or even a great painter. But then he will have to begin everything again, from zero."
--- Pablo Picasso
"How those fires burned that are no longer, how the weather worsened, how the shadow of the seagull vanished without a trace. Was it the end of a season, the end of a life? Was it so long ago it seems it might never have been? What is it in us that lives in the past and longs for the future, or lives in the future and longs for the past? (from "No Words Can Describe It")"
--- Mark Strand
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