Anita Brookner Quotes
35 Sourced Quotes
I am not a romantic. I am a domestic animal. I do not sigh and yearn for extravagant displays of passion, for the grand affair, the world well lost for love. I know all that, and know that it leaves you lonely. No, what I crave is the simplicity of routine. An evening walk, arm in arm, in fine weather. A game of cards. Time for idle talk. Preparing a meal together.
In the street the rain was little more than a fine mist which softened the outlines of the houses and even lent a touch of poetry to a neighbourhood unlikely to evoke tender emotions. He raised his eyes to a roofline bristling with television aerials, lowered them again to windows still blank before the evening lights were lit.
And yet she had never felt so bereft, as if her presence in other lives were entirely illusory, as if she herself were a kind of facsimile, pleasant but inauthentic. Before she got too old she must wrest some part of her life for herself, or she would fade, vanish, before anyone noticed her disappearance
I saw the business of writing for what it truly was and is to me. It is your penance for not being lucky. It is an attempt to reach others and to make them love you. It is your instinctive protest, when you find you have no voice at the world's tribunals, and that no one will speak for you. I would give my entire output of words, past, present, and to come, in exchange for easier access to the world, for permission to state "I hurt" or "I hate" or "I want." Or, indeed, "Look at me." And I do not go back on this. For once a thing is known it can never be unknown. It can only be forgotten. And writing is the enemy of forgetfulness, of thoughtlessness. For the writer there is no oblivion. Only endless memory.
It was, I saw, a flat to get out of rather than one to stay in. It was a machine for eating and sleeping in, a suitable dwelling place for a working woman, whose main interest is in her work. I disliked this version of myself, which seemed to negate my other activities, reduced them to after-hours amusements, whereas I had always thought them pretty central. These mute, white walls had been silent witnesses to many encounters; nevertheless, they withheld comment, and their very withholding struck me as unfriendly. Unheimlich was the word which came to mind when I stood on the threshold of my bedroom.