This expansive quotation comes from a wonderful novel by Mia Couto, in which a father tries to escape his past by isolating himself and his children from the world, even when this means brutally clipping their young wings.  Among other things he forbids them to read or write (or tries to). Yet their innate will to live, grow and learn, combined with their courage, means their spirits cannot be crushed.

See my review of The Tuner of Silences, complete with a mosaic of illustrated quotations and metaphors.


‘Life wasn’t made to be fleeting and of little consequence.  And the world wasn’t made to have boundaries.’


Source: Mia Couto, The Tuner of Silences, trans. David Brookshaw (Biblioasis, 2012 (2009)), p. 201

Photo credit: Frank McKenna at


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