That’s all my grandfather was guilty of, fear, faith in his words, but that was a high crime in her eyes. That’s all Jack was guilty of that day, but I’ve lived with him a good while and I believe I understand him. Sometimes it might take an afternoon or evening of being here in this kitchen alone, thinking, but I can usually come to see his reasons through his ways. And half the job of finding peace is finding understanding. Don’t you believe it to be so?

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Why had no one told me that my body would become a battlefield, a sacrifice, a test? Why did I not know that birth is the pinnacle where women discover the courage to become mothers? But of course there is no way to tell this or to hear it. Until you are the woman on the bricks, you have no idea how death stands in the corner, ready to play his part. Until you are the woman on the bricks, you do not know the power that rises from other women-even strangers speaking an unknown tongue, invoking the names of unfamiliar goddesses.

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Fear and love were sometimes the same thing both necessary unavoidable. Now she understood that it was okay to bleed if you know how to heal.

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I was afraid, sheer afraid, and wondered at myself. You see, I’ve no more pluck than any man of my inches but I’d been about a good bit. I’d seen adventure and heard other fellows talk it over, and I knew you’re pretty sure to get out of everything with a whole skin till that last particular time that you don’t – so what’s the use of grizzling? (“Golden Baby”)

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