The English Patient as read from the plane

 And after that, all he had to do was face Death in the eye, and he’d  feel it- An all-consuming calm; recognition of the pervase beauty of life and the powers within. Stare Death in the eye and he would not be  scared anymore.
“…how long is a day in the dark, or a week? The fire is gone now, and I’m horribly cold. I really ought to drag myself outside but then there would be the sun. . . I’m afraid I waste the light on the paintings and on writing these words. We die, we die rich with lovers and tribes, tastes we have swallowed, bodies we have entered and swum up like rivers, fears we have hidden in, like this wretched cave. We are the real countries, not the boundaries drawn on maps with the names of powerful men. I know you will come and carry me out into the palace of winds. That’s all I’ve wanted — to walk in such a place with you, with friends, on earth without maps…”                                                                                                                                                                                  Michael Odaatje, The English Patient (1992)

 

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