I’m in the middle of reading Zadie Smith’s On Beauty. The novel centers around the Belsey family, Zora of which is the eldest, followed by Jerome and then Levi. The latter bit of narration nearly brought me to tears because it so elegantly captures how I feel about my own three brothers.
People talk about the happy quiet that can exist between two lovers, but this too was great; sitting between his sister and his brother saying nothing, eating. Before the world existed, before it was populated, and before there were wars and jobs and colleges and movies and clothes and opinions and foreign travel — before all of these things there had been only one person, Zora, and only one place: a tent in the living room made from chairs and bed-sheets. After a few years, Levi arrived; space was made from him; it was as if he had always been. Looking at them both now, Jerome found himself in their finger joints and neat conch ears, in their long legs and wild curls. He heard himself in their partial lisps caused by puffy tongues vibrating against slightly noticeable buckteeth. He did not consider if or how or why he loved them. They were just love: they were the first evidence he ever had of love, and they would be that last confirmation of love when everything else fell away.
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