Perhaps it is the greatest grief, after all, to be left on earth when another is gone.— Madeline Miller
The most professional Madeline Miller quotes to discover and learn by heart
There is no law that gods must be fair, Achilles,” Chiron said.
“And perhaps it is the greater grief, after all, to be left on earth when another is gone. Do you think?
She wants you to be a god," I told him.
"I know." His face twisted with embarrassment, and in spite of itself my heart lightened. It was such a boyish response. And so human. Parents, everywhere.
and her skin shone luminous and impossibly pale, as if it drank light from the moon.
He is a weapon, a killer. Do not forget it. You can use a spear as a walking stick, but that will not change its nature.
My mind is filled with cataclysm and apocalypse. I wish for earthquakes, eruptions, flood.
In the darkness, two shadows, reaching through the hopeless, heavy dusk.
Their hands meet, and light spills in a flood like a hundred golden urns pouring out of the sun.
In making Achilles and Patroclus lovers, I wasn't trying to speak for all gay men, just as when I write straight characters, I don't claim to speak for all straight people. My job as an author is to give voice to these very particular characters - these two men, in this time, and in this place
I stopped watching for ridicule, the scorpion's tail hidden in his words.
He said what he meant; he was puzzled if you did not. Some people might have mistaken this for simplicity. But is it not a sort of genius to cut always to the heart?
When I first started studying Greek, one of my absolute favorite parts was realizing that so many English words had these old, secret roots. Learning Greek was like being given a super-power: linguistic x-ray vision.
The very dull truth is that writing love scenes is the same as writing other scenes - your job is to be fully engaged in the character's experience. What does this mean to them? How are they changed by it, or not? I remember being a little nervous, as I am when writing any high-stakes, intense scene (death, sex, grief, joy).
and when he moved it was like watching oil spread across a lake, smooth and fluid, almost vicious
. . .nothing could eclipse the stain of his dirty, mortal mediocrity.
As an author, one of the most important things I think you can do once you've written a novel is step back. When the book is out, it belongs to the readers and you can't stand there breathing over their shoulders.
Odysseus inclines his head. "True. But fame is a strange thing. Some men gain glory after they die, while others fade. What is admired in one generation is abhorred in another." He spread his broad hands. "We cannot say who will survive the holocaust of memory. Who knows?" He smiles. "Perhaps one day even I will be famous. Perhaps more famous than you.
I would still be with you. But I could sleep outside, so it would not be so obvious. I do not need to attend your councils. I—' 'No. The Phthians will not care. And the others can talk all they like. I will still be Aristos Achaion.' Best of the Greeks. 'Your honor could be darkened by it." 'Then it is darkened.' His jaw shot forward, stubborn. 'They are fools if they let my glory rise or fall on this.
A part of what makes myths live is their multiplicity, the way different voices retell them in every generation. Homer survives because his poetry was outstanding, yes, but also because he's been passed down by so many by luminaries like Vergil and Ovid, Shakespeare, James Joyce and Margaret Atwood, but also by countless others. I wanted to do my part for these tremendous stories.
I could recognize him by touch alone, by smell;
I would know him blind, by the way his breaths came and his feet struck the earth. I would know him in death, at the end of the world.
No man is worth more than another, wherever he is from.
He is more worth to you, perhaps. But the stranger is someone else's friend and brother. So which life is more important?
What's amazing to me is how many of the issues facing women in the ancient world still linger today. Take Odysseus' wife, Penelope, a brilliant, resourceful woman who ends up in a terrible situation: in her husband's absence, she is being held hostage in her own home by men who claim to be courting her. She tries to make them leave, but because she's a woman they refuse, blaming their bad behavior on her desirability.
I feel like I could eat the world raw.
People are people, whatever age they're living in.
The circumstances may have changed - we go to war with planes instead of chariots - but experiences of grief, longing, rage and love remain the same.
It was almost like fear, in the way it filled me, rising in my chest.
It was almost like tears, in how swiftly it came. But it was neither of those, buoyant where they were heavy, bright were they dull.
The door snicked shut.
I lay back and tried not to think of the minutes passing.
Just yesterday we had a wealth of them. Now each was a drop of heartsblood lost.
We were like gods at the dawning of the world, &
our joy was so bright we could see nothing else but the other.
Chiron had said once that nations were the most foolish of mortal inventions.
"No man is worth more than another, wherever he is from.
The ship's boards were still sticky with new resin.
We leaned over the railing to wave our last farewell, the sun-warm wood pressed against our bellies. The sailors heaved up the anchor, square and chalky with barnacles, and loosened the sails. Then they took their seats at the oars that fringed the boat like eyelashes, waiting for the count. The drums began to beat, and the oars lifted and fell, taking us to Troy.
I shift, an infinitesimal movement, towards him.
It is like the leap from a waterfall. I do not know, until then, what I am going to do.