The Snippets Project

March 2002

All at once, an eruption of speech, Mr. Troy
bursts out. "Would you--care to pray?" As
though he were asking me for the next dance.
"I've held out this long," I reply. "I may
as well hold out a while longer."

[Margaret Laurence,The Stone Angel,1964,locate]
Then something caught his ankle. Off
balance, he full full-length to the
rough stone floor, kicking wildly to
free his leg from that bony grip. He
stared down and felt his blood freeze
when he saw the severed hand of the
corpse clutching his foot. Its bony
claws bit into his flesh. Then a grisly
shape of nightmare horror and lunacy
loomed over him. The broken, mangled
face of the corpse leered down into
his, and one claw-hand darted towards
his throat.

[Lin Carter and L. Sprague de Camp,The Thing in the Crypt,1967,locate]
Better to die quickly. With one leap
the sword is in my hand, my palm curves
around it like an old friend. Sick,
drunk, my body remembering what I do
not, I fall into what I later know to
be the classic pattern of defense. I
use both hands on the sword; they are
still manacled together and I have no
choice. With a howl of rage he raises
his own sword, and I--sick, drunk,
manacled--I split his skull.

[Marion Zimmer Bradley,Warrior Woman,1985,locate]
Somewhere a department-store Santa Claus
was ho-ho-ho-ing into a PA system, and the
amplified sound was not jolly, but somehow
ominous, the laughter of a maniac who had
come in the night not with presents but
with a meat cleaver.

[Stephen King,Christine,1983,locate]
The work and the worry that fell to my lot
through the practical interest I took in
organ building, made me sometimes wish that
I had never troubled myself about it, but if
I do not give it up, the reason is that the
struggle for the good organ is to me a part
of the struggle for truth. And when on Sundays
I think of this or that church in which a
noble organ is sounding because I saved it
from an ignoble one, I feel myself richly
rewarded for all the time and trouble which
in the course of over thirty years I have
sacrificed in the interests of organ building.

[Albert Schweitzer (trans C.T. Campion) ,Out of my Life and Thought,1931,locate]
As they realized themselves in varying
degrees, few people alive at the time
were more delightful, more ingenious,
more movingly lovely, and, as it might
happen, more savage, than the girls of
slender means.

[Muriel Spark,The Girls of Slender Means,1963,locate]
The brothers went to their modest,
accustomed dinner in the refectory,
and observed, whatever their own
feelings were, the discipline of

[Ellis Peters (Edith Pargeter) ,The Pilgrim of Hate,1984,locate]
I have words to offer wisdom
And pictures to delight,
A story of a tragic Queen
And a fearless knight.
But my name remains a secret
It's hidden here within,
If you can but find it
More treasure you might win.

[Kit Williams,Untitled (a.k.a. "The Bee Book"),1984,locate]
When she regained her composure, she
earnestly instructed me never to speak
of the events of the last few minutes.
And should my parents ask about the doll,
I was to say I knew nothing. Usually I
would have been shocked to have Ashraf
ask me to lie. Not, however, on this
occasion, for I had glimpsed the dusty
gray bandages that swathed the face of
the figure in our doorway.

[Nick Bantock,The Egyptian Jukebox,1993,locate]
"Therefore I thank you for pointing out my
error, and at the same time I feel certain
that you will, by the love you bear me,
excuse my gross ignorance and as many other
flaws as find expression in my character.
I readily concede that you are the one to
correct and advise me in all matters, just
as I desire you to do and would so
appreciate your doing, for I realize how
little knowledge and ability I can justly
call my own."

[Suor Marie Celeste (Virginia Galilei, daughter of Galileo Galilei) quoted and translated by (Dava Sobel) ,Galileo's Daughter,1999,locate]
Most of the doctrines propounded in Calvin's
Institutes and all the doctrines embodied in
the decrees and canons of the Council of
Trent had coexisted peacefully in the Middle
Ages. Intellectual clerics could and did
debate them, question them, believe them,
and defend them. In a word, all the bits and
pieces that were to make up Protestantism and
Catholicism were in solution in medieval thought.

[Eugene F. Rice, Jr. and Anthony Grafton,The Foundations of Early Modern Europe, 1460-1559, 2nd edition,1994,locate]
It seemed to him that the pale and lovely
Summoner out there smiled at him and
beckoned; as though, with the hand he
lifted from his hip, he pointed outward
as he hovered on before into an immensity
of richest expectation. And, as so often
before, he rose to follow.

[Thomas Mann (trans H.T. Lowe-Porter) ,Death in Venice,1911,locate]
Then all day he was to pace the streets
with hundreds and thousands of other
homeless wretches, inquiring at stores,
warehouses, and factories for a chance;
and at night he was to crawl into some
doorway or underneath a truck, and hide
there until midnight, when he might get
into one of the station houses, and
spread a newspaper upon the floor, and
lie down in the midst of a throng of
"bums" and beggars, reeking with alcohol
and tobacco, and filthy with vermin and

[Upton Sinclair,The Jungle,1906,locate]
For no reason that he can imagine,
she's reached toward his living
body and offered herself.

[Carol Shields,Larry's Party,1997,locate]
'I don't want to be pope anymore,' I said.
'I want to be Jesus Christ.' My mother
laughed. 'It's too late for that. When
the angel came your mother was already
in bed with St. Joseph.'

[Nino Ricci,Lives of the Saints,1990,locate]
The girls in these commercials are always
great friends, and they are always gentle
and generous, budding communitarians,
fantasy kibbutzniks, although with
consumerist flair. They love, love, love
each other, almost as much as they love
the object that has brought them together.
Whatever else the producers of these
commercials may have been, one thing is
clear: they were never girls. Or if they
were, they've grown up to have a serious
sadistic streak to them. Giving a girl
the impression that girlhood is an
extended bounce on Barney's knee is like
prepping a young gazelle for life on the
Serengeti by dipping it in cream.

[Natalie Angier,Woman: An Intimate Geography,2000,locate]
First Witch:   When shall we three meet again
In thunder, lightning, or in rain?
Second Witch:   When the hurlyburly's done,
When the battle's lost and won.
Third Witch:   That will be ere the set of sun.
First Witch:   Where the place?
Second Witch:   Upon the heath.
Third Witch:   There to meet with Macbeth.
First Witch:   I come, Graymalkin!
Second Witch:   Paddock calls.
Third Witch:   Anon.
ALL:   Fair is foul, and foul is fair:
Hover through the fog and filthy air.

[William Shakespeare,The Tragedy of Macbeth,1600-1608,locate]