I think I would like to read a book by Frederick Buechner, for a few reasons. 1. Every time I hear his name, I hear it in the Ben Stein "Bueller" voice.
2. He writes fiction and non-fiction. I'm awed by people who can write good fiction - they live on a giant pedestal in my mind. I wouldn't even know where to begin. The craft of developing characters and plots. The detailed, inspired work of masterful story-telling - the symbolism, innuendoes, morals. Stunning. (Now I want to read a novel.)
3. The following:
"Think of these pages as graffiti maybe, and where I have scratched up in a public place my longings and loves, my grievances and indecencies, be reminded in private of your own. In that way, at least, we can hold a kind of converse."
"The love for equals is a human thing--of friend for friend, brother for brother. It is to love what is loving and lovely. The world smiles. The love for the less fortunate is a beautiful thing--the love for those who suffer, for those who are poor, the sick, the failures, the unlovely. This is compassion, and it touches the heart of the world. The love for the more fortunate is a rare thing--to love those who succeed where we fail, to rejoice without envy with those who rejoice, the love of the poor for the rich, of the black man for the white man. The world is always bewildered by its saints. And then there is the love for the enemy--love for the one who does not love you but mocks, threatens, and inflicts pain. The tortured's love for the torturer. This is God's love. It conquers the world."
"Here is the world. Beautiful and terrible things will happen. Don't be afraid."
"I not only have my secrets, I am my secrets. And you are yours. Our secrets are human secrets, and our trusting each other enough to share them with each other has much to do with the secret of what it means to be human."
"Of the Seven Deadly Sins, anger is possibly the most fun. To lick your wounds, to smack your lips over grievances long past, to roll over your tongue the prospect of bitter confrontations still to come, to savor to the last toothsome morsel both the pain you are given and the pain you are giving back--in many ways it is a feast fit for a king. The chief drawback is that what you are wolfing down is yourself. The skeleton at the feast is you."
"A miracle is when the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. A miracle is when one plus one equals a thousand."
"Compassion is the sometimes fatal capacity for feeling what it is like to live inside somebody else's skin. It's the knowledge that there can never really be any peace and joy for me until there is peace and joy finally for you too."
I love words. The things one can do with them is amazing.