Old Men at Midnight



P. 54 The Ark Builder

Did you notice how Reb Binyomin moves, how his shoes flip-flop over the trail he leaves, how he's afraid to advance, he's an unhappy person. That was Yoel, always in touch with another person's soul.

P. 58

A proud man, a lonely man, going from one door to the next with his hand out. That hurt him.


P. 128 The War Doctor

Do you remember the Russian saying I mentioned some time ago? Every day learns from the one that went before, but no day teaches the one that follows.

Well, sayings are as often wrong as they are right. One day can teach the day that follows. . .

P. 182 The Trope Teacher

There, the owl again, from the woods of the cemetery. Oh, yes, an explosive device ravaging an innocent airliner is the very guarantor of memory. Is that the reason we remember forever the biblical Amalekites who attacked Israelites during the exodus from Egypt? The assault upon helpless, fleeing people a bitter irony. What would that strange man, the trope--cantillation--teacher, have said to the that? The trope teacher! Why have I suddenly recalled the trope teacher? A quickening beat of the heart in the swiftly gathering clouds of sleep.

P. 191

I've written on war in Japan, and I don't know Japanese. Good translators are more than adequate.

I don't know about the Japanese. I know about Jewish history. No language, no historian. This will be a worth waging.

P. 234

He sighed. "This America of yours is not a country that values history. Where I was raised, history was the heart and marrow of a person. I am returning to the inside of myself that the war forced me to leave behind.

P. 252

"Life connects us, Benjamin, not artifice."

P. 268

They had been told about the hazard of a third pregnancy. The surgery and the transfusions, everyone had then thought, save her life. Now, as it turned out--a life for a life. Roar with rage against the void.


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