Thursday, June 10, 2010
The Old Man and the Sea by Earnest Hemingway
"He had no mysticism about turtles although he had gone in turtle boats for many years. He was sorry for them all, even the great trunk backs that were as long as the skiff and weighed a ton. Most people are heartless about turtles because a turtle's heart will beat for hours after he has been cut up and butchered. But the old man thought, I have such a heart too and my feat and hands are like theirs." (37)
"When once, through my treachery, it had been necessary to [the marlin] to make a choice, the old man thought. His choice had been to stay in the deep dark water far out beyond all snares and traps and treacheries. My choice was to go there to find him beyond all people. Beyond all people in the world. Now we are joined together and have been since noon. And no one to help either one of us." (50)
"...he thought much and he kept on thinking about sin. You did not kill the fish only to keep alive and to sell for food, he thought. You killed him for pride and because you are a fisherman. You loved him when he was alive and you loved him after. If you love hi, it is not a sin to kill him. Or is it more?
'You think too much, old man,' he said aloud.
But you enjoyed killing the dentuso [a shark who had attacked the dead marlin strapped to the boat], he thought. He lives on the live fish as you do. He is not a scavenger nor just a moving appetite as some sharks are. He is beautiful and noble and knows no fear of anything.
'I killed him in self-defense,' the old man said aloud. 'And I killed him well.'
Besides, he thought, everything kills everything else in some way. Fishing kills me exactly as it keeps me alive. The boy keeps me alive, he thought. I must not deceive myself too much." (105-106)