terça-feira, 17 de abril de 2012


After a death in his family, Philip Davis reflects on the child-like panic we are all going to feel at the end of adulthood, when we discover how distinctively singular and unbelievably unnecessary it is to die .......

Two summers ago in the archive of the Harry Ransom Center in Austin, Texas, I found a letter from the poet Josephine Carson to Bernard Malamud's wife, Ann, written in 1981 when Ann's mother was dying in some terrible slow rhythm of her own. It wasn't strictly a part of my main story, but I typed it out:
If one can become the helpful witness of one's mother's dying and feel one's way through it along parallel sympathetic lines exactly the way you, for instance, must have had to do with your children so as not to interrupt the proper sequence of their learning (the syntax is everything, I think, in all learning)--if one can find a way to do that, then one can learn a profound lesson about our lives that doesn't come so dramatically or convincingly in any other situation.

If not, wrote Carson, the parent has to die alone and secretively, as though the communication waves were jammed. I thought of this again when the consultant told me that a lot of patients die just after their relatives leave the room. Then they leave too. My dad once said that his own father had died saying simply, "Ta-ta"............

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