[because I haven’t used enough quotes from literature…]
Sympathy I have failed in, stoicism I have barely passed. But I have made straight A in irony – that curse, that evasion, that armor, that way of staying safe while seeming wise. One thing I have learned hard, if indeed I have learned it now: it is a reduction of our humanity to hide from pain, our own or others’. To hide from anything. That was Marian’s text. Be open, be available, be exposed, be skinless. Skinless? Dance around in your bones.
– Wallace Stegner, All the Little Live Things