Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Coercion toward joy

From 'A Fire Upon the Deep' by Vernor Vinge:

Her fifth time in the garden was the prettiest yet, a coercion toward joy. The flowers had sprayed downy seeds into the air. The lowering sunlight sparkled off them as they floated by the thousands on the slow breeze, clots in the invisible syrup. She imagined what Jefri would do here: first pretend grownup dignity, then bounce from one foot to the other. Finally he would race down the hillside, trying to capture as many of the flying tufts as he could. Laughing and laughing -

"One, two, how do you do?" It was a child's voice, behind her.

' ... a coercion toward joy.'  What a lovely turn of the phrase!

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