Memorable Lines: Richard Rodriguez
“Though I am alive now, I do not believe that an old man’s pessimism is truer than a young man’s optimism simply because it comes after. There are things a young man knows that are true and are not yet in the old man’s power to recollect. Spring has its sappy wisdom. Lonely teenagers still arrive in San Francisco aboard Greyhound buses. The city can still seem, I imagine, by comparison to where they came from, paradise.
Four years ago, on a Sunday in winter, a brilliant spring afternoon, I was jogging near Fort Point while overhead a young woman was, with difficulty, climbing over the railing of the Golden Gate Bridge. Holding down her skirt with one hand, with the other she waved to a startled spectator (the newspaper next day quoted a workman who was painting the bridge) before she stepped onto the sky.
To land like a spilled purse at my feet.”
– Richard Rodriguez, From “Late Victorians.”