In New York one lives in the moment rather more than Socrates advised, so that at a party or alone in your room it will always be difficult to guess at the long term worth of anything.

- Harold Brodkey

I am in an adolescence in reverse, as mysterious as the first, except that this time I feel it as a decay of the odds that I might live for a while, that I can sleep it off.

- Harold Brodkey

I was always crazy about New York, dependent on it, scared of it - well, it is dangerous - but beyond that there was the pressure of being young and of not yet having done work you really liked, trademark work, breakthrough work.

- Harold Brodkey

It is death that goes down to the center of the earth, the great burial church the earth is, and then to the curved ends of the universe, as light is said to do.

- Harold Brodkey

I look upon another's insistence on the merits of his or her life - duties, intellect, accomplishment - and see that most of it is nonsense.

- Harold Brodkey

I am sensible of the velocity of the moments, and entering that part of my head alert to the motion of the world I am aware that life was never perfect, never absolute. This bestows contentment, even a fearlessness.

- Harold Brodkey

But death's acquisitive instincts will win.

- Harold Brodkey

Death and I are head to head in a total collision, pure and mutual distaste.

- Harold Brodkey

I feel sorry for the man who marries you... because everyone thinks you're sweet and you're not.

- Harold Brodkey

Me, my literary reputation is mostly abroad, but I am anchored here in New York. I can't think of any other place I'd rather die than here.

- Harold Brodkey