Eliot, huh?" she says. The thin fabric of her long T-shirt brushes my arm. "Is everyone in your family named for a famous symbolist poet?" No, I'm named for someone who was supposed to be in the Bible but isn't." No? What happened to him?" I glance over at her, the way the corner of her mouth turns up, half-smirk, half-smile. Her hair moves as she walks. He was called to be a disciple, but he had, you know, stuff to do." Stuff, like... polishing his sandals? Making lunch?" We keep walking, over the bridge across the lake, past the swings and the playground equipment, just walking. Exactly. And what about you, Calliope... is everyone in your family named after a... what is it? A keyboard? An organ?" It's a steam-powered piano. It's also the name of the Greek goddess of poetry. You should read stuff other than chemistry; you'd know these things." Her smirky smile again, her sleeve touching my arm. I feel like my skin has been removed, every nerve exposed. I open my mouth, and this comes out: "I think you are more goddess than piano." Stupid, stupid. But she laughs. "You know, that's the nicest thing anyone's said to me today." You don't see too many calliopes, " I tell her. I'm Cal, actually. I mean, that's what I prefer." I meant the steam pianos... you don't see too many." She stops and looks at me, full-on, and right away I put it on the list of the best moments in my life. Until you said that, Eliot, I wasn't fully aware of the demise of the steam piano, so thank you. Really." I smirk at her and we both fight not to smile. "Okay, smart-ass, " I say.
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APABrad Barkley Quotes. (n.d.). Jar of Quotes. Retrieved , from JarofQuotes.com Web site: https://www.jarofquotes.com/view.php?id=eliot-huh-she-says-the-thin-fabric-her-long-tshirt-brushes-my-arm-is-everyone-in-your-family-named-for-famous-symbolist-poet-no-im-named-for-someone-who-was-supposed-to-be-in-bib
ChicagoBrad Barkley Quotes. Jar of Quotes, 2019. https://www.jarofquotes.com/view.php?id=eliot-huh-she-says-the-thin-fabric-her-long-tshirt-brushes-my-arm-is-everyone-in-your-family-named-for-famous-symbolist-poet-no-im-named-for-someone-who-was-supposed-to-be-in-bib, accessed .
MLA"Brad Barkley Quotes." Jar of Quotes, 2019. . https://www.jarofquotes.com/view.php?id=eliot-huh-she-says-the-thin-fabric-her-long-tshirt-brushes-my-arm-is-everyone-in-your-family-named-for-famous-symbolist-poet-no-im-named-for-someone-who-was-supposed-to-be-in-bib
You asked me if I believed in magic, and I said yes, and that's how. You just step out, start pulling your life out of the air. You make friends, you find work you really like doing, you find places. You find diners and Laundromats. You find beaches. You find a junk car and drive it for a month, then lave it beside the road. You find someone to fall in love with you. You make it all up as you go. Or, you know, maybe it makes you up.
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When you grow up the way I do, and the biggest thing in your life so far has been getting dunked in a glass tank by a man who acts like he's mugging you but says instead he's saving your soul, then celebrating your soul mugging at Sizzler with your parents (get the buffet by itself, not added on to a steak dinner, because the buffet already has sirloin tips), you need rules. And not their rules, not God's rules, but mine. My own. Here's on of Eliot's Rules for Dating: When you first meet a girl, make sure you are accidentally conducting a chemistry experiment on your lips. OK. I didn't say they were all good rules.
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I want to show you something, ' I say. What?' He dabs at his lips with the napkin, and for a moment I'm wishing so hard that I am that napkin that I can almost feel myself changing, becoming thin and papery and white. 'Cal?' I sit back and feel myself blushing, feel it from the tips of my toes all the way to the heat at the backs of my ears.
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She looked like she believed in something, or wanted to, and I hoped to hell it wasn't God, not in the way The Dad believes, because all that does is make him forced and desperate. No, it was something else, not just that I saw a pretty girl and just got all excited. I mean, yeah, that part is true, and she really was gorgeous, and the freckles covering her, the freckles on top of freckles all spread out and folding into one another made her skin look like it had grain and texture, like polished wood, like it would feel smooth to the touch, and so soft. I knew that. But it wasn't how she looked.
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I want to show you something," I say. What?" He dabs at his lips with the napkin, and for a moment I'm wishing so hard that I am that napkin that I can almost feel myself changing, becoming thin and papery and white. "Cal?" I sit back and feel myself blushing, feel it from the tips of my toes all the way to the heat at the backs of my ears.
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Cal," I whisper into her sleep, "if you go, you know what? You'll break my liver." I want to pretend that it's a joke, that she will wake up and laugh with me, throwing her head back the way she did last night, bit this time the words are true . . . she will break my liver, break my heart, kill everything inside alive inside me.
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