Last Reviewed on June 19, 2019, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 246
Soldier’s Pay is the story of Donald Mahon, a World War I pilot who was shot down and badly injured in the war. Finding quotes in the novel can often help you with your assignment, especially when it comes to the interactions of specific characters such as Joe Gilligan and Donald Mahon.
Joe is a former soldier himself who is on the train taking Donald home and sees him almost like a son. Joe proposes to a war widow on the train, named Margaret Powers, but she declines his offer.
That’s where this quote comes in:
You are suffering from disappointment. But this will pass away. The saddest thing about love, Joe, is that not only the love cannot last forever, but even the heartbreak is soon forgotten.
Quotes like these can help demonstrate the combination of hope and bleakness that exists in the book. Donald is a soldier that’s hurt so badly that he’s dying; however, he is the one who ends up marrying the widower Margaret Powers, despite his bleak circumstances.
Faulkner also has quotes about jealousy and regret as well, such as where it reads:
It’s jealousy, I think, which makes us wish to prevent people doing the things we had not the courage or the opportunity ourselves to accomplish once, and have not the power to do now.
You can also use these quotes to show the honesty of Faulkner’s characters, as well as their desperation.
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