Friday, December 14, 2018 Text is available under the CC BY-SA 3.0 licence.

John Hart

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I thought of my own wife's tears and her limp submission the night before — the bleak satisfaction I took from her smallness as I used her shamelessly. She's cried out, and remembering the taste of salted tears, I thought, for that instant, that I knew how the devil felt. Sex and tears, like sun and rain, were never meant to share a moment: but for a fallen soul, an act of wrong could, at times, feel very right, and that scared the hell out of me.
--
Ch. 4

 
John Hart

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After one of those terrible lovers' quarrels that leave one in a state of incomprehensible despair. I came out of the theater, tears streaming, and overheard the petulant voice of a college girl complaining to her boyfriend, "Well I don't see what was so special about that movie." I walked up the street, crying blindly, no longer certain whether my tears were for the tragedy on the screen, the hopelessness I felt for myself, or the alienation I felt from those who could not experience the radiance of Shoeshine. For if people cannot feel Shoeshine, what can they feel?... Later I learned that the man with whom I had quarreled had gone the same night and had also emerged in tears. Yet our tears for each other, and for Shoeshine did not bring us together. Life, as Shoeshine demonstrates, is too complex for facile endings.

 
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He seemed so confident that I, remembering my own confidence two nights before and with the baneful result, felt awe and vague terror. It must have been my weakness that made me hesitate to tell it to my friend, but I felt it all the more, like unshed tears.

 
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'No, Madam,' cried I, '—only—only I did not know that gentleman,—and so,—and so I thought—I intended—I—'
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