Friday, August 05, 2011

Quotes for Friday from Lewis Nkosi's Underground People

When the girl departed, leaving behind the smell of jasmine and eau-de-cologne, the two men watched her intently as she sashayed down the aisle of the plane, her marvellously rounded buttocks growing separate and independent with each step, suggesting something dull and Dutch, but also African, supple and graceful, a certain heathenish mobility of the body, as if responding to the subtle rhythms of the African tom-tom.
Page 34

Living under the same roof, even sleeping in the same bed, doesn't necessarily mean closeness. The way I look at it, it's simply a way for one of the couple to enforce marital obedience.
Page 110

Darling, you must always insist on having a seat next to a woman when you travel. The worst a woman can do is fall asleep on your shoulder and snore throughout your night flight!
Page 114

It's not that the men are afraid of death. It's only that, well, a snake crawls on its belly and has eyes that can look backwards.
Page 192

The day you come across my uncle Sekala no-one will need to point him out to you! Try to imagine a monster six-foot-ten, with a face like a train locomotive or the front of Mount Taba Situ, and you have the exact image of my uncle. Children have been known to cry when he has but looked at them; an attempt at a smile from him is likely to send children running for shelter behind their mother's skirts. When he makes a joke he smiles so hard that his eyes seem to close up and vanish, bringing to perfection his exceptional ugliness!
Page 195

Tense, hostile and jittery, they huddled around the mouth of the rock, listening to the sounds of the bush and the strain on their nerves was worse than on the two men who had already entered the cave; for in a time of danger action is an antidote to fear while inactivity paralyses the brain.
Page 205

In an age gone by, but not really so long ago that we cannot remember, when our fathers fought they titlted their spears against an enemy that could be seen, men with flesh and blood and bones like ourselves, not ghosts that, when they are challenged, melt into darkness!
Page 206


  1. Now I'm going to have to get this book.

  2. I think there are some beautiful writings in here. I see why you've added it to your all time favourites.

  3. @Geosi, it's a great novel. Give it a try.

  4. I love the quotes! you've inspired me to read so many books... this is one of them! Now, if only i can find the time...

  5. @yeh, you can create time. You can choose to read ten pages a day or something but make a commitment to read everyday.


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