I already admitted to tearing up reading The Catcher in the Rye and The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay, but that was because they were sad.
But there are times that a piece of language can be so beautiful and perfect in its construction alone that it can move the reader to tears no matter what its context. I’m thinking of A Dream Deferred by Langston Hughes, which so perfectly evokes images of joy that has been ruined, even before its ominous last line. Or the single perfect line “Fix it with your tiny fist there” from “Busting Up a Starbucks” by Mike Doughty. Or, of course, the best example is the opening of Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov.
Or, the dialogue in a recent panel of “Achewood:”
I have Airwolf. This is not code language. I am flying Airwolf because I own Airwolf.
Nothing else I could say would make more sense given what I own and what I am doing at this moment.
::sniff:: So… perfect. I need a moment.
I didn’t link to it above because the last panel doesn’t make sense unless you read the one before it.
And yeah, I can compare a webcomic to Nabokov if I want to. It’s my blog. Shut up.