Hiram Bell: First other survivor Paul meets.
“The world is full of foreshadowings, of adumbrations and premonitions, of ghostly haunts and visitations--but no one bakes them seriously. They're all pressed down, veneered, overlaid by the little lightbulbs and broad paved highways and wires that talk and tell people that existence is the accumulation of artificial lights and concrete highways and wires tingling with electricity. And people believe and feel safe and live sterile lives and lose the ability to think beyond man-made trash. But a big wave comes that washes away all the paved roads and shatters all the lightbulbs, and the wires are silent, and the people are drowned. And the veneer dissolves like paste, and all the ghostly underpinnings rise to the surface, and you can't dispel them with bright lights, because you haven't got any; and you can't outrun them on your highways, because the highways are under water; and you can't talk them away with copper wires, because the electricity is gone.”
“Soon you realize that the old-fashioned eerie beliefs are the real things, and all our boastful contrivances so much rubbish, and that you and everyone else have been hiding behind them, not so much because of the ghouls and the ghosts and the whole entourage of the twilight, but because you have been most terribly afraid of God.”
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