Friday, May 6, 2011
When I came home from the war I barricaded myself behind closed doors. How did it start? Like any accident, its genesis began from a mistake in apprehension.
Cue Mother: Enter Mother, stage right. Mother lies down.
Mother was dying. I had returned in 1945. Just as the sailor kissed his stockinged gal in the celebratory hub-bub of Times Square, Mother was in her death throes. In a final display of bad sportsmanship she had even deprived me of a hero’s welcome. It was all about her; she mitigated everything with her prodigious and irrepressible needs. Death was the one card she had left, and she played it like a shark. But I had the last laugh. Her three decades old confidence game was over (or was it?)!.
“What’s wrong with her?” Homer asked, playing his role as the perpetual questioning adolescent with aplomb.
“Because,” I said, “Everyone dies eventually.”
“I don’t know. I don’t think anyone knows for certain, its just the way of nature.”
“Maybe we die because God wants us back.”
I took a hard look at my brother, for I had not seen him in close to four years. I was shocked at how young he looked; it was as if the vicissitudes of age did not affect him, as if he was some man-child Dorian Gray: but he was somehow stooped and had lost stature or height.