The Fuse

What follows is a series of Warmed and Bound sentences as chosen by Richard Thomas. During the week of the book’s release, Richard took his favorite lines to Twitter, where an afterthought of a project suddenly became quite popular. Myself an adoring fan of his idea, I sought permission to use his posts and have since compiled and re-sorted them here. The excerpt from the book’s foreword captures well what these stand-out lines do for us. Many thanks to Richard Thomas for being the hardest worker in Noir. And thanks again to Steve Erickson for eloquently saying what we mean when we grin and sigh. Enjoy. —Pela


“…and the moment you read this sentence you know there’s a fuse attached to it, you can see in the distance its glint and hear in the background its hiss, this fuse that was lit before you ever picked up the book and which burns closer and brighter with every page turned.”
Steve Erickson


“I give her the truth on an ordinary day. It’s the release she’s been praying for.”

“Every move she made was slow and soft like the bubbles in a bath, loving like a mother”

“Lester felt something give deep inside him. Like a Christmas ornament in space”

“Crime-scene slides project themselves onto the wall…dust motes suspended in the lamplight.”

“My head throbs like a beaten heart. My first instinct was wrong.”

“She’s a whore and will always be a whore, he said. Bright flashes lit up the room.”

“Broken glass glitters under the streetlamp, a thousand green eyes tracking me.”

“On this road he had run from the fire. On this road, he was the wind.”

“In the woods they held hands…the trees bent into a portal blowing a voice through their flesh.”
Gavin Pate

“Her body inspired a tactile covetousness: you wanted it to be your hands alone on her body.”
Craig Davidson

“I touched her face and slowly ground my lips into hers…She tasted like bubblegum.”

“The streets glisten and a veil hangs over the sky, blotting the moon, the sun, and stars.”

“Each orgasm a flurry of pixel and data. Patterned chaos. A self-replicating archive”

“Where is the fifth ace?” “The fifth ace?” says the voice. “Sir, you are the fifth ace.”
Brian Evenson

“They came to see her dance, people with money and people with love.”

“You’d find the good gossip downtown…where grass and power lines fight for dominance.”

“From across the bar, I couldn’t stop staring at her, at that breathtaking mouth of hers.”

“She smells like a dryer. She has black hair but wears it like it’s blond.”

“Anarchy fucking rules. Riots in the streets fucking rule. Pee wee soccer games fucking rule.”

“Try to fall on your head when you land…A bloody nose will make it look more realistic.”

“Tonight in Sector 7, come see The Amazing Asher kill himself for your entertainment.”

“If you love me, she says, you’ll do this. She hands me a razor blade.”

“Like the brain, everything about you will dry up & deplete. Until you’re nothing but bones.”

“You killed me that day. Have you ever had to hold your mouth with both hands?”

“Ernie learns to walk. And soon after, takes to chasing trains.”

“Ralph, What is sex like in the later years? My sweet, have you ever shot pool with a rope?”
Gary Paul Libero

“The baby died. I put it in the trash. Remember to pull the can to the curb tomorrow.”

“Yes, I could see it in the child there, a black door under the confetti of his brains…”

“The thing was hissing and it tried to curl in on itself and Myra started shaking”
Jeremy Robert Johnson

“You were heavier than I expected, and the room felt bigger than it was.”

“They take you at night. Or, they take you early in the morning.”

“What was supposed to be an infant in seven months now sits in the palm of my hand.”
Gayle Towell

“Without Tilly the world was clocks. They hovered with round faces and she scurried away.”

“The moon is full on the horizon, full and dancing along the top of every gentle wave.”

“She flared in the dark like some wild animal’s lone eye in my headlights.”
Craig Clevenger

“I look at her again. I want to see something there…to remember the woman I married. But I can’t.”
JR Harlan

“She bites down hard on my collarbone and my whole body jerks.”
Mark Jaskowski

“For the 15 seconds it takes her to saw through the arm I’ve never loved anyone as much as her.”

“When I came out of that fever dream, stumbling into the sunlight…I had resurrected myself.”


2 responses

  1. Richard Thomas

    Awesome, thanks for compiling this Pela. Wow, when I go back and re-read these lines, just random bits of beauty and horror that sang to me from the pages of W&B, I’m blown away once again. Honored to be in here. You did a great job, Pela.

    08/03/2011 at 4:55 PM

  2. PV

    Thank YOU, Richard. You’ve become a survival tool for me.

    08/03/2011 at 7:33 PM

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