Trains Quotes (60 Quotes)
“You can start by wiping that fucking dumb-ass smile off your rosey, fucking, cheeks! Then you can give me a fucking automobile... a fucking Datsun, a fucking Toyota, a fucking Mustang, a fucking Buick! Four fucking wheels and a seat! And I really don't care for the way your company left me in the middle of fucking nowhere with fucking keys to a fucking car that isn't fucking there. And I really didn't care to fucking walk down a fucking highway and across a fucking runway to get back here to have you smile at my fucking face. I want a fucking car RIGHT FUCKING NOW!”
“I've always felt that distant train whistles heard in the dead of night are the universe's way of letting us know the best days are neither ahead nor behind us...they're happening right now, cradled in the palms of our hands. But that doesn't change the fact that the whiskey, weed, and romance eventually runs out and the night will soon turn to day.”
“The train bore me away, through the monstrous scenery of slag-heaps, chimneys, piled scrap-iron, foul canals, paths of cindery mud criss-crossed by the prints of clogs. This was March, but the weather had been horribly cold and everywhere there were mounds of blackened snow. As we moved slowly through the outskirts of the town we passed row after row of little grey slum houses running at right angles to the embankment. At the back of one of the houses a young woman was kneeling on the stones, poking a stick up the leaden waste-pipe which ran from the sink inside and which I suppose was blocked. I had time to see everything about her—her sacking apron, her clumsy clogs, her arms reddened by the cold. She looked up as the train passed, and I was almost near enough to catch her eye. She had a round pale face, the usual exhausted face of the slum girl who is twenty-five and looks forty, thanks to miscarriages and drudgery; and it wore, for the second in which I saw it, the most desolate, hopeless expression I have ever-seen. It struck me then that we are mistaken when we say that ‘It isn’t the same for them as it would be for us,’ and that people bred in the slums can imagine nothing but the slums. For what I saw in her face was not the ignorant suffering of an animal. She knew well enough what was happening to her—understood as well as I did how dreadful a destiny it was to be kneeling there in the bitter cold, on the slimy stones of a slum backyard, poking a stick up a foul drain-pipe.”
“I lie down on many a station platform; I stand before many a soup kitchen; I squat on many a bench;--then at last the landscape becomes disturbing, mysterious, and familiar. It glides past the western windows with its villages, their thatched roofs like caps, pulled over the white-washed, half-timbered houses, its corn-fields, gleaming like mother-of-pearl in the slanting light, its orchards, its barns and old lime trees.
The names of the stations begin to take on meaning and my heart trembles. The train stamps and stamps onward. I stand at the window and hold on to the frame. These names mark the boundaries of my youth.”
“When it happens and it hits hard, we decide certain things, and realize there's truth in all those dark, lonely days"
He had an instantaneous look about him,
a glimmer and a glint over those eyes,
he knew how the world worked,
and took pleasure in its wickedness.
He would give a dime or two to those sitting on the street,
he would tell them things like:
"It won't get any better,"
"Might as well use this to buy your next fix,"
"It's better to die high than to live sober,"
His suit was pressed nicely, with care and respect,
like the kind a corpse wears,
he'd say that was his way of honoring the dead,
of always being ready for the oncoming train,
I liked him,
he never wore a fake smile
and he was always ready to tell a story about
"We all wake up alone," he said once,
"Oftentimes even when sleeping next to someone, we wake up before them and they are still asleep and suddenly we are awake, and alone."
I didn't see him for a few days,
a few days later it felt like it'd been weeks,
those weeks drifted apart from one another,
like leaves on a pond's surface,
and became like months.
And then I saw him and I asked him where he'd been,
"I woke up alone one day, just like any other, and I decided I didn't like it anymore.”
“Six express tracks and twelve locals pass through Palimpsest. The six Greater Lines are: Stylus, Sgraffito, Decretal, Foolscap, Bookhand, and Missal. Collectively, in the prayers of those gathered prostrate in the brass turnstiles of its hidden, voluptuous shrines, these are referred to as the Marginalia Line. They do not run on time: rather, the commuters of Palimpsest have learned their habits, the times of day and night when they prefer to eat and drink, their mating seasons, their gathering places. In days of old, great safaris were held to catch the great trains in their inexorable passage from place to place, and women grappled with them with hooks and tridents in order to arrive punctually at a desk in the depth, of the city.
As if to impress a distracted parent on their birthday, the folk of Palimpsest built great edifices where the trains liked to congregate to drink oil from the earth and exchange gossip. They laid black track along the carriages’ migratory patterns. Trains are creatures of routine, though they are also peevish and curmudgeonly. Thus the transit system of Palimpsest was raised up around the huffing behemoths that traversed its heart, and the trains have not yet expressed displeasure.
To ride them is still an exercise in hunterly passion and exactitude, for they are unpredictable, and must be observed for many weeks before patterns can be discerned. The sport of commuting is attempted by only the bravest and the wildest of Palimpsest. Many have achieved such a level of aptitude that they are able to catch a train more mornings than they do not.
The wise arrive early with a neat coil of hooked rope at their waist, so that if a train is in a very great hurry, they may catch it still, and ride behind on the pauper’s terrace with the rest of those who were not favored, or fast enough, or precise in their calculations. Woe betide them in the infrequent mating seasons! No train may be asked to make its regular stops when she is in heat! A man was once caught on board when an express caught the scent of a local. The poor banker was released to a platform only eight months later, when the two white leviathans had relinquished each other with regret and tears.”
“We teach our child many things I don’t believe in, and almost nothing I do believe in. We teach punctuality, particularly if the enforcement of it disturbs the peace. My father taught me, by example, that the greatest defeat in life was to miss a train. Only after many years did I learn that an escaping train carries away with it nothing vital to my health. Railroad trains are such magnificent objects we commonly mistake them for Destiny.”
“Now he slept soundly through the nights, and often he dreamed of trains, and often of one particular train: He was on it; he could smell the coal smoke; a world went by. And then he was standing in that world as the sound of the train died away. A frail familiarity in these scenes hinted to him that they came from his childhood. Sometimes he woke to hear the sound of the Spokane International fading up the valley and realized he’d been hearing the locomotive as he dreamed.”
“On the train: staring hypnotized at the blackness outside the window, feeling the incomparable rhythmic language of the wheels, clacking out nursery rhymes, summing up moments of the mind like the chant of a broken record: god is dead, god is dead. going, going, going. and the pure bliss of this, the erotic rocking of the coach. France splits open like a ripe fig in the mind; we are raping the land, we are not stopping.”