“Good children are defined as meek, considerate, unselfish and perfectly law-abiding. Such rules allow no place for vitality, spontaneity, inner freedom, inner independence and critical judgment. These rules cause parents, even well-intentioned ones, to abandon their children. Such abandonment creates the toxic shame I’ve been describing.
“Somehow, it soon seemed taken for granted by all three of them that the trip was a settled thing; and the Rat, though still unconvinced in his mind, allowed his good-nature to over-ride his personal objections.”
“Pietro Crespi took the sewing basket from her lap and he told her, “We’ll get married next month.” Amaranta did not tremble at the contact with his icy hands. She withdrew hers like a timid little animal and went back to her work. “Don’t be simple, Crespi.” She smiled. “I wouldn’t marry you even if I were dead.”
“To be absolutely free! One is quite capable, of course, of working out these destructive passions in more vulgar and less efficient ways. But how glorious to release them in a single burst! To sing, to scream, to dance barefoot in the woods in the dead of night, with no more awareness of mortality than an animal!”
“Or we fall in love with someone who incarnates the virtues or vices opposite our own. An orderly man who plans his days marries a spontaneous woman who lets things lie where they fall, lives in the moment, and is perpetually late for appointments.”