Apr. 19th, 2012

ciroccoj: (books)
Don't ask me why, but I'm (rather morbidly) re-reading Passage, a book about Near Death Experiences by Connie Willis. Brilliant book, loved it, decided upon finishing it that I would treasure the reading experience but never, never read it again.

And yet here I am, re-reading it. ::sigh::

Anyway, one of the cool things about this books is that each Part and each chapter opens with a Last Words quote. It's not always somebody's final words; it can be a postcard written right before someone set off on their final cruise, or a quote about someone laughing off a warning they should have listened to, or whatever, but it always has to do with death.

So of course I decided to collect the quotes. For light-hearted re-reading or... something.

INTRO
  • I will remember it forever, the darkness and the cold.
    - Edith Haisman, a Titanic survivor

  • "What is it like down there, Charides?"
    "Very dark."
    "And what of return?"
    "All lies."
    - Callimachus


PART 1


CHAPTERS
  1. "More light!"
    - Goethe's last words

  2. "Over Forked River. Course Lakehurst."
    - Last wireless message of the Hindenburg

  3. "Oh, shit."
    - Last words on majority of flight recorders recovered after a plane crashes

  4. "I beg your pardon, monsieur. I did not mean to do it."
    - Marie Antoinette, after she had accidentally stepped on the executioner's foot while mounting to the guillotine

  5. "CQD CQD SOS SOS CQD SOS. Come at once. We have struck a berg. CQD OM. Position 41° 40'N, 50° 14' W. CQD SOS."
    - Wireless message sent by the Titanic to the Carpathia

  6. "Hey, where the hell are the parachutes?"
    - Question asked by Glenn Miller as he boarded the plane to Paris, to which Colonel Baesell replied, "What's the matter, Miller, do you want to live forever?"

  7. "On board the Pacific from Liverpool to N.Y. - Confusion on board - Icebergs around us on every side. I know I cannot escape. I write the cause of our loss that friends may not live in suspense. The finder will please get it published. Wm. Graham."
    - Message found in a bottle, 1856

  8. "To die would be an awfully big adventure."
    - Last words of Broadway producer Charles Frohman, quoting from his close friend James Barrie's Peter Pan just before he went down on the Lusitania

  9. "Mildred, why aren't my clothes laid out? I've got a seven o'clock call."
    - Last words of Bert Lahr

  10. "Water! Water!"
    - Last words of Captain Lehmann, Captain of the Hindenburg, dying of burns

  11. "Jesus... Jesus... Jesus..."
    - Joan of Arc's last words, in the flames

  12. "Why, man, they couldn't hit an elephant at this dist-"
    - American Civil War general John Sedgwick's last words, at the Battle of Spotsylvania Courthouse

  13. "This is funny."
    - Doc Holliday's last words

  14. "Mother never reached me. If... anything happens... you must be prepared. Remember the message: Rosabelle, believe. When you hear those words... know it is Houdini speaking..."
    - Harry Houdini's words to his wife on his deathbed, promising to communicate with her from the afterlife

  15. "Adieu, my friends! I go to glory!"
    - Isadora Duncan's last words, spoken as she got into a roadster and flung her long scarf around her neck in a dramatic gesture. When the car pulled away, the scarf caught in the spokes of the wheel and strangled her.

  16. "Even in the valley of the shadow of death, two and two do not make six."
    - Word of Leo Tolstoy on his deathbed, upon being asked to return to the fold of the Russian Orthodox Church

  17. "And in my dream an angel with white wings came to me, smiling."
    - From Paul Gaugin's last notes, published after his death

  18. "I dread the journey greatly."
    - Mary Todd Lincoln, in a letter written shortly before her death

November 2012

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