The Writer’s Almanac tells me that Virginia Woolf’s novel Mrs. Dalloway was published today in 1925. It’s my second-favorite of hers (To The Lighthouse is the first) but, like all her work, it’s a little hard to get a pithy, blog-length quote out of it. But here’s this:
She would not say of any one in the world that they were this or were that. She felt very young; at the same time unspeakably aged. She sliced like a knife through everything; at the same time was outside, looking on. She had a perpetual sense, as she watched the taxi cabs, of being out, far out to the sea and alone; she always had the feeling that it was very, very dangerous to live even one day. Not that she thought herself clever, or much out of the ordinary…She knew nothing; no language, no history; she scarcely read a book now, except memoirs in bed; and yet to her it was absolutely absorbing; all this; the cabs passing; and she would not say of Peter, she would not say of herself, I am this, I am that.