They were different colors: the right one blue, the left green. And her face in the light of the candle on the table startled me at first, just as it had in the icy night air. After seeing it on the street, I was afraid I had only imagined it: a still, luminous face with a silvery sheen. Finely hewn, with a long, straight nose and a wide mouth, it was nearly identical to another face, which I had photographed years before. Not on a person, bu on the fragment of a frieze I found in some ruins near Verona, The frieze, which depicted a band of musicians, had once been shadowed beneath a cornice high on the temple of Mercury, god of magic. Belonging to one of the musicians, it was a riveting face - like a puzzle that could not be solved - which I had never found, or expected to find, on a living woman.
Odd: I wish I could believe in reincarnation. Chief Porter: Not me. Once down the track is enough of a test. Pass me or fail me, Dear Lord, but don't make me go through high school again. Odd: If there's something we want so bad in this life but we can't have it, maybe we could get it the next time around. Chief Porter: Or maybe not getting it, accepting less without bitterness and being grateful for what we have is a part of what we're here to learn.
I ran across an excerpt today (in English translation) of some dialogue/narration from the modern popular writer, Paulo Coelho in his book: Aleph.(Note: bracketed text is mine.).. 'I spoke to three scholars,' [the character says 'at last.'].. Two of them said that, after death, the [sic (misprint, fault of the publisher)] just go to Paradise. The third one, though, told me to consult some verses from the Koran. [end quote]'..I can see that he's excited. [narrator]'.. Now I have many positive things to say about Coelho: He is respectable, inspiring as a man, a truth-seeker, and an appealing writer; but one should hesitate to call him a 'literary' writer based on this quote. A 'literary' author knows that a character's excitement should be 'shown' in his or her dialogue and not in the narrator's commentary on it. Advice for Coelho: Remove the 'I can see that he's excited' sentence and show his excitement in the phrasing of his quote.(Now, in defense of Coelho, I am firmly of the opinion, having myself written plenty of prose that is flawed, that a novelist should be forgiven for slipping here and there.)Lastly, it appears that a belief in reincarnation is of great interest to Mr. Coelho.. Just think! He is a man who has achieved, (as Leonard Cohen would call it), 'a remote human possibility.' He has won lots of fame and tons of money. And yet, how his preoccupation with reincarnation none other than an interest in being born again as somebody else suggests that he is not happy!