He was not sure, but liked it. It recurred when they met suddenly or had been silent. It beckoned to him across intellect, saying, "This is all very well, you're clever, we know-but come!" It haunted him so that he watched for it while his brain and tongue were busy, and when it came he felt himself replying, "I'll come-I didn't know." "You can't help yourself now. You must come." "I don't want to help myself." "Come then." He did come. He flung down all the barriers-not at once, for he did not live in a house that can be destroyed in a day.
As it recurred again and again, it set me thinking of what my architect's books say about the custom in early times to consecrate the choir as soon as it was built, and that the nave, being finished sometimes half a century later, often did not get any blessing at all: I wondered idly if that had been the case at St. Barnabe, and whether something not usually supposed to be at home in a Christian church, might have entered undetected, and taken possession of the west gallery. I had read of such things happening too, but not in works on architecture. ("In The Court Of The Dragon")
Robert W. Chambers
Hence, when his name was casually mentioned by neighboring yeomen, the listener said, "Ah, Clym Yeobright: what is he doing now?' When the instinctive question about a person is, What is he doing? it is felt that he will not be found to be, like most of us, doing nothing in particular. There is an indefinite sense that he must be invading some region of singularity , good or bad. The devout home is that he is doing well. The secret faith is that he is making a mess of it... So the subject recurred: if he were making a fortune and a name, so much the better for him, if he were making a tragical figure in the world, so much the better for a narrative
Magnus remembered a town in Peru whose Quechua name meant 'quiet place.' He recalled even more vividly being obscenely drunk and unhappy over his heartbreak of that time, and the maudlin thoughts that had recurred to him over the years, like an unwanted guest slipping in through his doors: that there was no peace for such as he, no quiet place, and there never would be. Except he found himself remembering lying in bed with Alec-all of their clothes on, lounging on the bed on a lazy afternoon, Alec laughing, head thrown back, the marks Magnus had left on his throat very plain to see.
Sarah Rees Brennan
But if Miss Golightly remained unconscious of my existence, except as a doorbell convenience, I became, through the summer, rather an authority on hers. I discovered, from observing the trash-basket outside her door, that her regular reading consisted of tabloids and travel folders and astrological charts; that she smoked an esoteric cigarette called Picayunes; survived on cottage cheese and Melba Toast; that her vari-colored hair was somewhat self-induced. The same source made it evident that she received V-letters by the bale. They were torn into strips like bookmarks. I used occasionally to pluck myself a bookmark in passing. Remember and miss you and rain and please write and damn and goddamn were the words that recurred most often on these slips; those, and lonesome and love.
The hours I spent in this anachronistic, bibliophile, Anglophile retreat were in surreal contrast to the shrieking horror show that was being enacted in the rest of the city. I never felt this more acutely than when, having maneuvered the old boy down the spiral staircase for a rare out-of-doors lunch the next day-terrified of letting him slip and tumble-I got him back upstairs again. He invited me back for even more readings the following morning but I had to decline. I pleaded truthfully that I was booked on a plane for Chile. 'I am so sorry, ' said this courteous old genius. 'But may I then offer you a gift in return for your company?' I naturally protested with all the energy of an English middle-class upbringing: couldn't hear of such a thing; pleasure and privilege all mine; no question of accepting any present. He stilled my burblings with an upraised finger. 'You will remember, ' he said, 'the lines I will now speak. You will always remember them.' And he then recited the following: What man has bent o'er his son's sleep, to brood How that face shall watch his when cold it lies? Or thought, as his own mother kissed his eyes, Of what her kiss was when his father wooed? The title (Sonnet XXIX of Dante Gabriel Rossetti)-'Inclusiveness'-may sound a trifle sickly but the enfolded thought recurred to me more than once after I became a father and Borges was quite right: I have never had to remind myself of the words. I was mumbling my thanks when he said, again with utter composure: 'While you are in Chile do you plan a call on General Pinochet?' I replied with what I hoped was equivalent aplomb that I had no such intention. 'A pity, ' came the response. 'He is a true gentleman. He was recently kind enough to award me a literary prize.' It wasn't the ideal note on which to bid Borges farewell, but it was an excellent illustration of something else I was becoming used to noticing-that in contrast or corollary to what Colin MacCabe had said to me in Lisbon, sometimes it was also the right people who took the wrong line.