"My family visited Auschwitz for Christmas that year. It seemed only fitting, for a masochistically-sympathetic group such as ourselves to relive the trauma of our ancestors, specifically, my father’s parents, on such a celebratory occasion."
"The sounds of the city echoed outside, but here inside the West Wing, I found myself confronted by a silent figure: a voiceless thrush in a golden frame." On a relief sculpture by Jean-Antoine Houdon.
"There isn’t much relevant about the island, other than it was a mass of concrete and metal. It could have been Tokyo, Alcatraz, or even Los Angeles, and not much would change. It was an island, close to the water, but blooming with unnatural creation. It was difficult to grapple with."