I Have My Donne Essay

634 WordsMar 23, 20093 Pages
My mind was racing, my childlike ingenuity forcing my imagination to exaggerate wildly. I walked down the corridor of the hospital and was hit with apprehension; never had I experienced the grim task of visiting a dying loved one. Bracing myself, I entered his room, but rather than encountering the gloomy scene I expected, it exuded a profound serenity. “All mankind is of one author, and is one volume; when one man dies, one chapter is not torn out of the book, but translated into a better language,” slipped from my grandfather’s aged lips; a gentle, contented smile shone from his face. He died the next day. How was he so calm as death approached? Did he not fear or even grasp the extent of the unknown path before him? What did the quote he knew so well mean to him? The beauty I beheld in that sterile hospital room did not reveal its importance until years later, but that scene of a peaceful death held a precious secret that has come to affect my very being. When I turned 16, this memory struck me and forced me to wonder what was the key to my grandfather’s peace. When I asked my mother what he was thinking on his deathbed, she answered with fond reverence, “He was reciting the poems of John Donne in his mind, going over the lines he’d studied a thousand times and could never forget. He always loved his books and his poetry, they held a special place in his heart. He devoted his life to them. Does that help?” I left the room before she had finished this last sentence. Books, literature, poetry - these had granted my grandfather a consummate life. I rushed to my sister’s room and sat before her towering bookshelf. I recited the titles: Catcher in the Rye; The Bell Jar; The Brothers Karamazov; Siddhartha; Candide; The Great Gatsby; The Heart is a Lonely Hunter; Heart of Darkness; Madame Bovery; The Stranger; Gulliver’s Travels ... They all sounded so

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