Quotes for Friday from Ben Okri's The Famished Road

His mind had been unhinged by the blast of detonators, nights spent with corpses and by the superstitious incredulity of having killed so many white men. [33]

"That's good. Life is full of riddles that only the dead can answer," was Dad's reply. [40]

"The only power poor people have is their hunger." [70]

The dead shook off their rust of living and seized up steel. Their lips quivered with the defiance of innocents, with manipulations of politicians and their interchangeable dreams, and with the insanity of thugs who don't even know for which parties they commit their atrocities. [180]

It was a night replaying its corrosive recurrence on the road of our lives, on the road which was hungry for great transformations. [180]

Her eyes were narrowed as if they were endlessly trying to exclude most of what they saw. [228]

"Can you understand what the rats are saying?"
"No. But I can kill them."
"Because they are never satisfied. They are like bad politicians and imperialists and rich people."
"They eat up property. They eat up everything in sight. And one day when they are very hungry they will eat us up." [233]

The school-children were in their uniforms. A cock crowed repeatedly. Mum got her tray together. I was ready for school. Mum went down the street, swaying, moving a little sleepily, with one more burden added to her life. She was merely a detail in the poverty of our area. [238]

"They made me think. Everything has to fight to live. Rats work very hard. If we are not careful they will inherit the earth." [441]

People who look like human beings are not human beings. Strange people are amongst us. We must be careful. Our lives are changing. Our gods are silent. Our ancestors are silent. A great something is going to come from the sky and change the face of the earth. [498]

We must look at ourselves differently. We are freer than we think. We haven't begun to live yet. The man whose light has come on in his head, in his dormant sun, can never be kept down or defeated. We can redream this world and make the dream real. Human beings are gods hidden from ourselves. [498]

People who use only their eyes do not SEE. People who use only their ears do not HEAR. It is more difficult to love than to die. It is not death that human beings are most afraid of, it is love. The heart is bigger than a mountain. One human life is deeper than the ocean. [498]

Wars are not fought on battlegrounds but in a space smaller than the head of a needle. [498]

A dream can be the highest point in life. [500]
Read the review here.


  1. Waiting for the review of this book... You've pinned down some beautiful lines here.


Post a Comment

Help Improve the Blog with a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

10. Unexpected Joy at Dawn: My Reading

69. The Clothes of Nakedness by Benjamin Kwakye, A Review

Quotes for Friday from Ola Rotimi's The Gods Are not to Blame I