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Sputnik Sweetheart

 

Sumire couldn’t work out what she meant. Knife and fork poised in mid-air, she gave it some thought. “Sputnik? You mean the first satellite the Soviets sent up, in the fifties? Jack Kerouac was an American novelist. I guess they do overlap in terms of generation…”

from Haruki Murakami “Sputnik Sweetheart (Translated by Philip Gabriel)”

 

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All God’s Children Can Dance

This hurt the first time she said it, but after he had gone with her long enough, Yoshiya began to enjoy dancing. As he let himself go and moved his body in time to the music, he would come to feel that the natural rhythm inside him was pulsing in perfect unison with the basic rhythm of the world. The ebb and flow of the tide, the dancing of the wind across the plains, the course of the stars through the heavens: he felt certain that these things were by no means occurring in places unrelated to him.

from Haruki Murakami “After the Quake: Stories” (Translated by Jay Rubin)

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Norwegian Wood

“So after he died, I didn’t know what it meant to love another person.”
She reached for her wineglass on the table but only managed to knock it over, spilling wine on the carpet. I crouched down and retrived the glass, setting it on the table. Did she want to drink some more? I asked. Naoko remained silent for a while., then suddenly burst into tears, trembling all over. Slumping forward, she same suffocating violence as she had that night with me.

from Haruki Murakami “Norwegian Wood” (Translated by Jay Rubin)”

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Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage

“Tsukuru, there’s one thing I want you to remember. You aren’t colorless. Those were just names. I know we often teased you about it, but it was just a stupid joke. Tsukuru Tazaki is a wonderful, colorful person. A person who builds fantastic stations. A healthy thirty-six-year-old citizen, a voter, a taxpayer – someone who could fly all the way to Finland just to see me. You don’t lack anything. Be confident and be bold. That’s all you need. Never let fear and stupid pride make you lose someone who’s precious to you.”

from Haruki Murakami “Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage” (Translated by Philip Gabriel)

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After Dark

She goes on with her story. “I don’t remember how long the darkness lasted. Now it seems awfully long to me, but in fact it may not have been that long. Exactly how many minutes it lasted−five minutes, twenty minutes−really doesn’t matter. The important thing is that during that whole time in the dark, Eri was holding me. And it wasn’t just some ordinary hug. She squeezed one. She never loosened her grip for a second, It felt as though if we separated the slightest bit, we would never see each other in this world again.”
from Haruki Murakami “After Dark”