Quotes By Bradbury Stories: 100 of His Most Celebrated Tales

“The library was like a stone quarry where no rain had fallen in ten thousand years. Way off in that direction: silence. Way off in that direction: hush. It was the time between things finished and things begun. Nobody died here. Nobody was born. The library, and all its books, just were. We”


“No matter how hard you try to be what you once were you can only be what you are here and now. Time hypnotizes. When you’re nine, you think you’ve always been nine years old and will always be. When you’re thirty, it seems you’ve always been balanced there on that bright rim of middle life. And then when you turn seventy, you are always and forever seventy. You’re in the present, you’re trapped in a young now or an old now, but there is no other now to be seen.”


“stone. I hate being clever, thought the captain, when you don’t really feel clever and don’t want to be clever. To sneak around and make plans and feel big about making them. I hate this feeling of thinking I’m doing right when I’m not really certain I am. Who are we, anyway? The majority? Is that the answer? The majority is always holy, is it not? Always, always; just never wrong for one little insignificant tiny moment, is it? Never ever wrong in ten million years? He thought: What is this majority and who are in it? And what do they think and how did they get that way and will they ever change and how the devil did I get caught in this rotten majority? I don’t feel comfortable. Is it claustrophobia, fear of crowds, or common sense? Can one man be right, while all the world thinks they are right? Let’s not think about it. Let’s crawl around and act exciting and pull the trigger. There, and there!”


“When you strip all the clothes away and the doodads, you have two human beings who were either happy or unhappy”


“When you strip all the clothes away and the doodads, you have two human beings who were either happy or unhappy together, and we have no complaints.”


“we’re the start of an amazing, dumbfounding history of survival that will only get better as the centuries pass.”


“What are we?” he asked. “Why, we are the miracle of force and matter making itself over into imagination and will. Incredible. The Life Force experimenting with forms. You for one. Me for another. The Universe has shouted itself alive. We are one of the shouts. Creation turns in its abyss. We have bothered it, dreaming ourselves to shapes. The void is filled with slumbers; ten billion on a billion on a billion bombardments of light and material that know not themselves, that sleep moving and move but finally to make an eye and waken on themselves. Among so much that is flight and ignorance, we are the blind force that gropes like Lazarus from a billion-light-year tomb. We summon ourselves. We say, O Lazarus Life Force, truly come ye forth. So the Universe, a motion of deaths, fumbles to reach across Time to feel its own flesh and know it to be ours. We touch both ways and find each other miraculous because we are One.”


“They sat on the edge of a brook and took off their shoes and let the water cut their feet off to the ankles with an exquisite cold razor.”


“How strange the popsicle, the vanilla night, the night of close-packed ice cream, of mosquito-lotioned wrists, the night of running children suddenly veered from their games and put away behind glass, behind wood, the popsicles in melting puddles of lime and strawberry where they fell when the children were scooped indoors.”


“The man just opened his mouth, which meant that all kinds of secret doors in his body gave way. He did not sing so much as let his soul free.”


“I bet it’s the eleventh Commandment,” murmured the priest, eyes down. “What would the eleventh Commandment be?” asked Doone, scowling. “Why not: ‘THOU SHALT SHUT UP AND LISTEN’” said the priest. “Ssh.”


“This will be the one trip of your life. Keep your eyes wide.”


“Everyone thinks that. It’s one of those little secrets we keep from each other. Show me a serious man and I’ll show you a man who has never wept. Show me a madman and I’ll show you a man who dried his tears a long time ago. Go ahead.” “I”


“Then, left alone, shivering, I happened to glance up. I stood, I froze, blinking up through the drift, the drift, the silent drift of blinding snow. I saw the high hotel windows, the lights, the shadows.
What's it like up there? I thought. Are fires lit? Is it warm as breath? Who are all those people? Are they drinking? Are they happy?
Do they even know I'm HERE?”


“So the rest of the summer you could see the two little girls and Tom like wrens on a wire, on Mrs. Bentley’s front porch, waiting. And when the silvery chimes of the icicle man were heard, the front door opened, Mrs. Bentley floated out with her hand deep down the gullet of her silver-mouthed purse, and for half an hour you could see them there on the porch, the children and the old lady putting coldness into warmness, eating chocolate icicles, laughing. At last they were good friends. “How old are you, Mrs. Bentley?” “Seventy-two.” “How old were you fifty years ago?” “Seventy-two.” “You weren’t ever young, were you, and never wore ribbons or dresses like these?” “No.” “Have you got a first name?” “My name is Mrs. Bentley.” “And you’ve always lived in this one house?” “Always.” “And never were pretty?” “Never.” “Never in a million trillion years?” The two girls would bend toward the old lady, and wait in the pressed silence of four o’clock on a summer afternoon. “Never,” said Mrs. Bentley, “in a million trillion years.”


“Intuited novels are far more ‘true’ than all your scribbled data-fact reportage in the history of the world!”


“went to the Rock to hide my face                 And the Rock cried out, “No Hiding Place,                 There’s no Hiding Place down here.”


“You want to cry some more, go on ahead. I did the same last night.” “You, sir?” “God’s truth. Thinking of everything ahead. Both sides figuring the other side will just give up, and soon, and the war done in weeks, and us all home. Well, that’s not how it’s going to be. And maybe that’s why I cried.”


“I remember once, when I lived in the Capital for a month and bought the paper fresh each day, I went wild with love, anger, irritation, frustration; all of the passions boiled in me. I was young. I exploded at everything I saw. But then I saw what I was doing: I was believing what I read. Have you noticed? You believe a paper printed on the very day you buy it? This has happened but only an hour ago, you think! It must be true.' He shook his head. 'So I learned to stand back away and let the paper age and mellow. Back here, in Colonia, I saw the headlines diminish to nothing. The week-old paper—why, you can spit on it if you wish. It is like a woman you once loved, but you now see, a few days later, she is not quite what you thought. She has rather a plain face. She is no deeper than a cup of water.”


“Strange. Half my years afraid of life. The other half, afraid of death. Always some kind of afraid.”


“It’s the Lord’s space and the Lord’s worlds in space, Father. We must not try to take our cathedrals with us, when all we need is an overnight case.”


“HEAVY-SET”


“Jump off the cliff and build your wings on the way down. Over”