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Leslie Marmon Silko Quotes

20 of the best book quotes from Leslie Marmon Silko
01
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“He had been so intent on finding the cattle that he had forgotten all the events of the past days and past years. Hunting the cattle was good for that. Old Betonie was right.”
Leslie Marmon Silko
author
Ceremony-Silko
book
the past
clarity
transformation
flashback
concepts
02
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“He had proven something to himself; it wasn’t as strong as it had once been. It was changing, unraveling like the yarn of a dark heavy blanket wrapped around a corpse, the dusty rotted strands of darkness unwinding, giving way to the air; its smothering pressure was lifting from the bones of his skull.”
03
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“Tayo’s heart beat fast; he could see Josiah’s vision emerging, he could see the story taking form in bone and muscle.”
04
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“The dry skin was still stuck to his body. But the effects of the witchery of the evil thing began to leave his body.”
05
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“She taught me this above all else: things which don’t shift and grow are dead things. They are things the witchery people want. Witchery works to scare people, to make them fear growth.”
06
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“I’ve been thinking . . . all this time, while I was sitting in my chair. Those white doctors haven’t helped you at all. Maybe we had better send for someone else.”
07
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“The only cure I know is a good ceremony, that’s what she said.”
08
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“It’s a matter of transitions, you see; the changing, the becoming must be cared for closely. You would do as much for the seedlings as they become plants in the field.”
09
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″‘Those people,’ he said, pointing in the direction the women and children had gone, ‘I thought they locked them up.’ ‘Oh, that was some years back. Right after Pearl Harbor. But now they’ve turned them all loose again. Sent them home.‘”
10
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“They called it battle fatigue, and they said hallucinations were common with malarial fever.”
11
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“He could feel it inside his skull—the tension of little threads being pulled and how it was with tangled things, things tied together, and as he tried to pull them apart and rewind them into their places, they snagged and tangled even more.”
12
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“You’ve been doing something all along. All this time, and now you are at an important place in this story.”
13
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“The first day in Oakland he and Rocky walked down the street together and a big Chrysler stopped in the street and an old white woman rolled down the window and said, ‘God bless you, God bless you,’ but it was the uniform, not them, she blessed.”
14
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“Years and months had become weak, and people could push against them and wander back and forth in time. Maybe it had always been this way and he was only seeing it for the first time.”
15
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″‘One night or nine nights won’t do it anymore,’ the medicine man said; ‘the ceremony isn’t finished yet.’ ‘Remember these stars,’ he said. ‘I’ve seen them and I’ve seen the spotted cattle; I’ve seen a mountain and I’ve seen a woman.‘”
16
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“Old Betonie might explain it this way—Tayo didn’t know for sure: there were transitions that had to be made in order to become whole again, in order to be the people our Mother would remember; transitions, like the boy walking in bear country being called back softly.”
17
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“A transition was about to be completed: the sun was crossing the zenith to a winter place in the sky, a place where prayers of long winter nights would call out the long summer days of new growth. Tonight the old priests would be praying for the force to continue the relentless motion of the stars.”
18
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“If a person wanted to get to the moon, there was a way; it all depended on whether you knew the directions—exactly which way to go and what to do to get there; it depended on whether you knew the story of how others before you had gone.”
19
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“He could still see the face of the little boy, looking back at him, smiling, and he tried to vomit that image from his head because it was Rocky’s smiling face from a long time before, when they were little kids together.”
20
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“He never lost the feeling he had in his chest when she spoke those words, as she did each time she told them stories; and he still felt it was true, despite all they had taught him in school—that long long ago things had been different, and human beings could understand what the animals said, and once the Gambler had trapped the storm clouds on his mountaintop.”

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