Louise Erdrich quote

"In our own beginnings, we are formed out of the body's interior landscape. For a short while, our mothers' bodies are the boundaries and personal geography which are all that we know of the world...Once we no longer live beneath our mother's heart, it is the earth with which we form the same dependent relationship, relying...on its cycles and elements, helpless without its protective embrace."

Louise Erdrich

Born: June 7, 1954

Occupation: Writer

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More quotes of Louise Erdrich

Louise Erdrich

We have these earthly bodies. We don't know what they want. Half the time, we pretend they are under our mental thumb, but that is the illusion of the healthy and the protected. Of sedate lovers. For the...

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Louise Erdrich

To be of mixed blood is a great gift for a writer. I have one foot on tribal lands and one foot in middle-class life.

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Louise Erdrich

Cold sinks in, there to stay. And people, they'll leave you, sure. There's no return to what was and no way back. There's just emptiness all around, and you in it, like singing up from the bottom of a...

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Louise Erdrich

Here is the most telling fact: you wish to possess me.
 Here is another fact: I loved you and let you think you could.

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Louise Erdrich

Freedom, I found is not only in the running but in the heart, the mind, the hands.

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Louise Erdrich

I am part of what she thinks is her illness, a symptom of which she thinks she has been cured. She, on the other hand, is what I was looking for.

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Louise Erdrich

Old love, middle love, the kind of love that knows itself and knows that nothing lasts, is a desperate shared wildness.

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Louise Erdrich

Can you stop your mother from singing to you? Who would do such a thing?

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Louise Erdrich

...which causes me to wonder, my own purpose on so many days as humble as the spider's, what is beautiful that I make? What is elegant? What feeds the world?

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Louise Erdrich

Women without children are also the best of mothers,often, with the patience,interest, and saving grace that the constant relationship with children cannot always sustain. I come to crave our talk and...

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Louise Erdrich

It didn't occur to me that my books would be widely read at all, and that enabled me to write anything I wanted to. And even once I realized that they were being read, I still wrote as if I were writing...

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Louise Erdrich

some people meet the way the sky meets the earth, inevitably, and there is no stopping or holding back their love. It exists in a finished world, beyond the reach of common sense.

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Louise Erdrich

Hunger steals the memory

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Louise Erdrich

He despised his body for its boring hungers, reflex anger; its petty, obliterating rage. But now he'd become detached. He regarded his body with a tender regret. It was the thing his spirit had to haul.

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Louise Erdrich

So what is wild? What is wilderness? What are dreams but an internal wilderness and what is desire but a wildness of the soul?

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Louise Erdrich

When every inch of the world is known, sleep may be the only wilderness that we have left.

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Louise Erdrich

If, as I suspect, my body survives by uttering itself over and over again, then I have some questions. If [I] am one word, so are my daughters, so are all of us in strings and loops. Each life is one short...

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Louise Erdrich

Where was I?""A different island," said old Tallow. Her voice was stern, but there was an ache in her look that Omakayas had never before seen. "An island called Spirit Island where everyone but you died...

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Louise Erdrich

...whom he had saved from a life of excessive freedom

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Louise Erdrich

It was just enough to sit there without words.

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Louise Erdrich

I got well by talking. Death could not get a word in edgewise, grew discouraged, and traveled on.

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Louise Erdrich

Life will break you. Nobody can protect you from that, and living alone won't either, for solitude will also break you with its yearning. You have to love. You have to feel. It is the reason you are here...

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Louise Erdrich

There will never come a time when I will be able to resist my emotions.

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Louise Erdrich

Columbus only discovered that he was in some new place. He didn't discover America.

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Louise Erdrich

What happens when you let an unsatisfactory present go on long enough? It becomes your entire history.

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Louise Erdrich

It's impossible to write about Native life without humor-that's how people maintain sanity.

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Louise Erdrich

Every so often something shatters like ice and we are in the river of our existence. We are aware.

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Louise Erdrich

I tried out the unfamiliar syllables. They fit. They cracked in my ears like a fist through ice.

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Louise Erdrich

Her clothes were filled with safety pins and hidden tears.

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Louise Erdrich

When we are young, the words are scattered all around us. As they are assembled by experience, so also are we, sentence by sentence, until the story takes shape.

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Louise Erdrich

They were so strong in their beliefs that there came a time when it hardly mattered what exactly those beliefs were; they all fused into a single stubbornness.

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Louise Erdrich

Women are strong, strong, terribly strong. We don't know how strong until we're pushing out our babies.

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Louise Erdrich

All of our actions have in their doing the seed of their undoing. ... That in her creation of her children there should be the unspeakable promise of their death, for by their birth she had created mortal...

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Louise Erdrich

To sew is to pray. Men don't understand this. They see the whole but they don't see the stitches. They don't see the speech of the creator in the work of the needle. We mend. We women turn things inside...

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Louise Erdrich

What is this life but the sound of an appalling love.

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Louise Erdrich

In our own beginnings, we are formed out of the body's interior landscape. For a short while, our mothers' bodies are the boundaries and personal geography which are all that we know of the world...Once...

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Louise Erdrich

Women are strong, strong, terribly strong. We don't know how strong until we are pushing out our babies. We are too often treated like babies having babies when we should be in training, like acolytes,...

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Louise Erdrich

The contents of a house can trigger all sorts of revisions to family history.

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Louise Erdrich

Ravens are the birds I'll miss most when I die. If only the darkness into which we must look were composed of the black light of their limber intelligence. If only we did not have to die at all. Instead,...

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Louise Erdrich

Love won't be tampered with, love won't go away. Push it to one side and it creeps to the other.

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Louise Erdrich

We all got holes in our lives. Nobody dies in a perfect garment.

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Louise Erdrich

Your life feels different on you, once you greet death and understand your heart's position. You wear your life like a garment from the mission bundle sale ever after - lightly because you realize you...

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Louise Erdrich

Coming down off the trail, I am lost in my own thoughts and unprepared when a bear chugs across the path just before it gives out on the gravel road. I am so distracted that I keep walking towards the...

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Louise Erdrich

The world tips away when we look into our children's faces.

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Louise Erdrich

You have to love. You have to feel. It is the reason you are here on earth. You are here to risk your heart.

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Louise Erdrich

She had always been a reader… but now she was obsessed. Since her discovery of the book hoard downstairs from her job, she’d been caught up in one such collection of people and their doings after the...

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Louise Erdrich

We started dying before the snow, and like the snow, we continued to fall.

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Louise Erdrich

When small towns find they cannot harm the strangest of their members, when eccentrics show resilience, they are eventually embraced and even cherished.

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Louise Erdrich

Our songs travel the earth. We sing to one another. Not a single note is ever lost and no song is original. They all come from the same place and go back to a time when only the stones howled.

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Louise Erdrich

The universe is transformation.

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Louise Erdrich

Veils of love which was only hate petrified by longing--that was me.

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Louise Erdrich

The only time I see the truth is when I cross my eyes.

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Louise Erdrich

i want to hear what's happened to you," she said evenly after a while. she gestured in the direction, down river, of the butcher shop. "it's just that there is nowhere else to start," she said gently....

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Louise Erdrich

Life will break you. Nobody can protect you from that, and living alone won't either, for solitude will also break you with its yearning. You have to love. You have to feel. It is the reason you are here...

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Louise Erdrich

The story comes around, pushing at our brains, and soon we are trying to ravel back to the beginning, trying to put families into order and make sense of things. But we start with one person, and soon...

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Louise Erdrich

We do know that no one gets wise enough to really understand the heart of another, though it is the task of our life to try.

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Louise Erdrich

Here I am, where I ought to be. A writer must have a place where he or she feels this, the place to love and be irritated with.

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Louise Erdrich

Things which do not grow and change are dead things.

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Louise Erdrich

...Grandpa's mind had left us, gone wild and wary. When I walked with him I could feel how strange it was. His thoughts swam between us, hidden under rocks, disappearing in weeds, and I was fishing for...

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Louise Erdrich

How come we've got these bodies? They are frail supports for what we feel. There are times I get so hemmed in by my arms and legs I look forward to getting past them. As though death will set me free like...

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Louise Erdrich

So many things in the world have happened before. But it's like they never did. Every new thing that happens to a person, it's a first... In that night I felt expansion, as if the world was branching out...

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Louise Erdrich

I prefer to have some beliefs that don't make logical sense.

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Louise Erdrich

Society is like this card game here, cousin. We got dealt our hand before we were even born, and as we grow we have to play as best as we can.

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Louise Erdrich

I was in love with the whole world and all that lived in its rainy arms.

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Louise Erdrich

But then as time passed, I learned the lesson that parents do early on. You fail sometimes. No matter how much you love your children, there are times you slip. There are moments you can't give, stutter,...

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Louise Erdrich

To love another another human in all of her splendor and imperfect perfection , it is a magnificent task...tremendous and foolish and human.

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Louise Erdrich

By writing I can live in ways that I could not survive.

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Louise Erdrich

We are never so poor that we cannot bless another human being, are we? So it is that every evil, whether moral or material, results in good. You'll see.

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Louise Erdrich

Now that I knew fear, I also knew it was not permanent. As powerful as it was, its grip on me would loosen. It would pass.

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Louise Erdrich

But if there was embellishment, it only had to do with the facts.

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Louise Erdrich

...don't read anything except what destroys the insulation between yourself and your experience...

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Louise Erdrich

The only answer to this, and it isn't an entire answer, said Father Travis, is that God made human beings free agents. We are able to choose good over evil, but the opposite too. And in order to protect...

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Louise Erdrich

We passed over in a sweep of sorrow that would persist into our small forever. We just keep going.

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Louise Erdrich

This so gnawed at him on some nights that he lay awake wondering just how many unknown and similarly inconsequential accidents and bits of happenstance were at this moment occurring or failing to occur...

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Louise Erdrich

The greatest wisdom doesn't know itself. The richest plan is not to have one.

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Louise Erdrich

Her mind was present because she was always gone. Her hands were filled because they grasped the meaning of empty. Life was simple. Her husband returned and she served him with indifferent patience this...

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Louise Erdrich

I think she is confused by the way I want her, which is like nobody else. I know this deep down. I want her in a new way, a way she's never been told about.

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Louise Erdrich

He had a thousand-year-old stare.

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Louise Erdrich

There are ways of being abandoned even when your parents are right there.

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Louise Erdrich

I stood there in the shadowed doorway thinking with my tears. Yes, tears can be thoughts, why not?

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Louise Erdrich

Women don't realize how much store men set on the regularity of their habits. We absorb their comings and goings into our bodies, their rhythms into our bones.

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Louise Erdrich

Right and wrong were shades of meaning, not sides of a coin.

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“Don't cry because it's over, smile because it happened.”

― Dr. Seuss