Thursday Quotables: Close Your Eyes, Hold Hands


Welcome back to Thursday Quotables! This weekly feature is the place to highlight a great quote, line, or passage discovered during your reading each week.  Whether it’s something funny, startling, gut-wrenching, or just really beautifully written, Thursday Quotables is where my favorite lines of the week will be, and you’re invited to join in!

Close Your Eyes, Hold Hands

Close Your Eyes, Hold Hands by Chris Bohjalian
(published July 8, 2014)

Maybe not the most profound passage from this bleak and disturbing book, but I think I can honestly say that it will change my life forever:

This is not the most important thing I am going to tell you, but it may be the most interesting: Did you know that a lot of Emily Dickinson’s poems can be sung to the theme from Gilligan’s Island? Not kidding, this is totally legit.

The narrator goes on to say, “So, try it” and gives this one to work with:

Because I could not stop for Death,
He kindly stopped for me;
The carriage held but just ourselves
And Immortality.

We slowly drove, he knew no haste,
And I had put away
My labor, and my leisure too,
For his civility.

You just sang that, didn’t you? Holy moly. It really works. And I tried it with other Dickinson poems, too. Yup, it totally fits.

Curse you, Chris Bohjalian! I’ll never be able to not sing Dickinson/Gilligan again!

(One more by Emily Dickinson, chosen at random… )

Look back on time with kindly eyes,
He doubtless did his best;
How softly sinks his trembling sun
In human nature’s west!


Updated to add:

I’d be remiss not to provide a chance to hear the Gilligan theme, so here it is!


What lines made you laugh, cry, or gasp this week? Do tell!

If you’d like to participate in Thursday Quotables, it’s really simple:

  • Write a Thursday Quotables post on your blog. Try to pick something from whatever you’re reading now. And please be sure to include a link back to Bookshelf Fantasies in your post (, if you’d be so kind!
  • Leave your link in the comments — or, if you have a quote to share but not a blog post, you can leave your quote in the comments too!
  • Visit other linked blogs to view their Thursday Quotables, and have fun!

7 thoughts on “Thursday Quotables: Close Your Eyes, Hold Hands

  1. Hi 🙂
    No quotes from me this this Thursday, but I hope to have one next week.
    I’m not familiar with Gilligan’s work, so I can’t sing the songs, but this is the first time I read anything by Emily Dickinson and I must say she’s powerful!

    • In this book, the main character explains that Gilligan’s Island is a really old TV show that her English teacher told her about and that she looked it up on YouTube. Makes me feel really old too, since I remember watching this show!

      • Just seen the video now. Well, I don’t have anythign agaisnt the show, which I don’t know at all, but… Oh my goodness! Poor Dickinson will be rollingin her grave 🙂

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