From The Long Shadow of Small Ghosts: Murder and Memory in an American City
by Laura Tillman
What struck me is that Tillman's communication with a death-row
inmate was so very different in nature to that of Bryan Stevenson.
He is the author of Just Mercy, which is definitely a must-read!
And yet, maybe not. Both of these people face challenges in
these relationships they form or formed with those convicted to die.
***Page 72 of The Long Shadow of Small Ghosts, a letter from John to Tillman:
"good enough." I can only imagine that this referred to his lifelong dream of serving in
the military as much as anything else, though he may well have felt that applied to his
whole life. It just makes me sad. I don't want anyone to have to feel this way. But John
obviously couldn't make it on his own; he was unable to support himself and especially
***Page 73 of The Long Shadow of Small Ghosts, regarding the U.S./Mexico border at
unbelievable degree. Republicans setting voting district boundaries to prevent the votes
of minorities from having much impact, establishing voter ID laws to prevent minority
voters from registering and/or voting, and outright disenfranchising voters...because they
can. It is time this practice stopped!
***Pages 75-76 of The Long Shadow of Small Ghosts, regarding Tillman's trip across the
border into Matamoros, Mexico:
totally unable to understand or try to place this into their knowledge banks; the best and
only thing they can do is ignore it. And for those same people poverty is an abstract
concept--just a word in their vocabulary, really, but nothing to care about or think about.
Others are totally sympathetic, and even empathetic, though few of us truly reach out
and interact with others living in poverty. Excellent questions to ponder...all too often
those who could help the most do nothing...
***Page 76 of The Long Shadow of Small Ghosts, the U.S./Mexico border:
aesthetically pleasing, after all. Terrible what we humans do to each other. A fence
and/or wall can serve as just a beginning of future treachery.
people living in Mexico are so determined to cross that border. John had stated "they
knew where they could go if they lost the apartment." (Though they had been homeless ] and sleeping in the streets before...):
wood, aluminum roofing, etc. So they could at least have a life without fear of being
kidnapped, killed, etc.
good provider and father were all he had to keep himself "alive in jail." There are times
when it is more beneficial to allow others their own view of 'reality' than to correct them,
and this was one of those.
***Pages 192-193 of The Long Shadow of Small Ghosts, from a study in the journal
***Page 204 of The Long Shadow of Small Ghosts, description of executions:
in the movement toward equality overall...
and not just for those who are directly experience discrimination,
but for each and every individual.
So many excellent quotes from Moon Tiger by Penelope Lively:
*** Laszlo, Claudia's 'surrogate son' from Budapest, muses about her on page 187 of Moon
Tiger by Penelope Lively
*** Claudia describing her relationship with her dead brother, Gordon, on page 187 of Moon
Tiger by Penelope Lively
*** Claudia musing on the concept of 'afterlife' on page 125 of Moon Tiger by Penelope
others form their own unique impressions of us with total disregard for how we would
like to be remembered! :) Someone once told me their goal was to "make everyone
love" them. What a heavy burden to place upon oneself! Particularly given the fact this is
a totally unrealistic and unattainable goal! No matter how "nice" you are, not everyone
will even like you or accept you as you are, let alone LOVE you!
*** Tom answers Claudia's question, "Are we going to win the war?" on page 102 of Moon
Tiger by Penelope Lively
*** Claudia speaking of Sasha, a Russian immigrant, on page 66 of Moon Tiger by
don't feel that I am and I totally agree with this sentiment. It is as if we cannot truly ever
recapture childhood, can we?
*** Claudia, speaking of her life partner, on page 65 of Moon Tiger by Penelope Lively
anything or anyone else could possibly wield such input into who they are! Quite
*** Page 30 of Moon Tiger by Penelope Lively
*** At the beginning of A Sudden Light by Garth Stein:
we see them as we are."
applying filters to every experience, though typically
subconsciously. Research keeps proving this over and over again.
I believe the more we can realize this, the better we can
sympathize with others' viewpoints and accept their unique
interpretations of events, as well as our own--they will not always
match! And that is okay, to be expected even!
*** This from one of the people I have most admired and who carried with her the
most pervasive spiritual presence I've experienced in another's presence...
people will forget what you did,
but people will never forget how you made them feel."
of leaving each individual feeling at least a little bit better as a result of our interaction?
Probably not, but at least I am working to train myself to literally "think before I speak"
and work to make others feel better about themselves... Truly, all we can do is try. :)
*** A quote posted on Goodreads:
The more I learn of history, the more I believe this to be true and I wonder...will the
human race EVER truly evolve beyond this cyclical nature thus far evidenced? I have
faith it will, regardless of the past repetitions. I really want to read his book Einstein's
*** From page 110 of The Shoemaker's Wife:
Though never technically an orphan myself, I have long felt that
friends are "family you choose." I believe that blends with this
sentiment in that not only orphans can be open to others helping
and nurturing them, but each of us can benefit from that same
welcoming attitude toward others we encounter throughout our
lives. As well as offering others aid in whatever way(s) possible.