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The Grapes of Wrath Quotes

25 of the best book quotes from The Grapes of Wrath
  1. #1
    “She seemed to know, to accept, to welcome her position, the citadel of the family, the strong place that could not be taken. And since Tom and the children could not know hurt or fear unless she acknowledged hurt and fear, she has practiced denying them in herself.”
  2. #2
    “Death was a friend, and sleep was death’s brother.”
  3. #3
    “She seemed to know that if she swayed the family shook, and if she ever really deeply wavered or despaired the family would fall, the family will to function would be gone.”
  4. #4
    “How can we live without our lives? How will we know it’s us without our past?”
  5. #5
    “Up ahead they’s a thousan’ lives we might live, but when it comes it’ll on’y be one.”
  6. #6
    “There ain’t no sin and there ain’t no virtue. There’s just stuff people do.”
  7. #7
    “I’m jus’ pain covered with skin.”
  8. #8
    “I’m gettin’ tired way past where sleep rests me.”
  1. #9
    “I nearly always write just as I nearly always breathe.”
  2. #10
    “Our people are good people; our people are kind people. Pray God some day kind people won’t all be poor.”
  3. #11
    “A large drop of sun lingered on the horizon and then dripped over and was gone, and the sky was brilliant over the spot where it had gone, and a torn cloud, like a bloody rag, hung over the spot of its going. And dusk crept over the sky from the eastern horizon, and darkness crept over the land from the east.”
  4. #12
    “If he needs a million acres to make him feel rich, seems to me he needs it ‘cause he feels awful poor inside hisself, and if he’s poor in hisself, there ain’t no million acres gonna make him feel rich, an’ maybe he’s disappointed that nothin’ he can do ‘ll make him feel rich.”
  5. #13
    “And her joy was nearly like sorrow.”
  6. #14
    “The clouds appeared and went away, and in a while they did not try anymore.”
  7. #15
    “They’s times when how you feel got to be kep’ to yourself.”
  8. #16
    “I’m scared of stuff so nice. I ain’t got faith. I’m scared somepin ain’t so nice about it.”

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  1. #17
    “Her hazel eyes seemed to have experienced all possible tragedy and to have mounted pain and suffering like steps into a high calm and a superhuman understanding.”
  2. #18
    “She seemed to know, to accept, to welcome her position, the citadel of the family, the strong place that could not be taken.”
  3. #19
    “And since, when a joyful thing happened, they looked to see whether joy was on her, it was her habit to build up laughter out of inadequate materials.”
  4. #20
    “But better than joy was calm. Imperturbability could be depended upon.”
  5. #21
    “And from her great and humble position in the family she had taken dignity and a clean calm beauty. From her position as healer, her hands had grown sure and cool and quiet; from her position as arbiter she had become as remote and faultless in judgment as a goddess. She seemed to know that if she swayed the family shook, and if she ever really deeply wavered or despaired the family would fall, the family will to function would be gone.”
  6. #22
    “You’re bound to get idears if you go thinkin’ about stuff.”
  7. #23
    “The last clear definite function of man—muscles aching to work, minds aching to create . . . ”
  8. #24
    “Man, unlike any other thing organic or inorganic in the universe, grows beyond his work, walks up the stairs of his concepts, and emerges ahead of his accomplishments.”
  9. #25
    “If you’re in trouble or hurt or need–go to poor people. They’re the only ones that’ll help–the only ones.”