Death scenes hit me hard. Fictional or real, it doesn’t matter—I don’t do well when the eternal footman gets around to calling.
In high school, on a date, Maybelline Great Lash made it all the way to my chin when Blade Runner’s Roy Batty, his replicant body spotted with the chalky marks of decay, releases the dove and says to Deckard: “Time to die.”
At the end of The Notebook, I stood sobbing in the lobby of a Lowe’s Cineplex theater. Kind movie strangers came up to ask, Are you okay, honey? Do you need a doctor? I wanted to tell them that a doctor can’t help me. My problem is with death.
And then there are the novels. Oh, the dying and dying in the pages of great books. It can take me weeks to recover.
The other day I found a wasp on a trail through the woods. He was the size of .50 caliber bullet. He opened and closed his wings, but was unable to move.
I stayed with him and watched him die. Then I picked him up and took him home. It’s the magnificence of it all that really gets me in the end.