Monday, February 18, 2013

Southern Gothic Stories

I don't really like the grotesque Southern Gothic that takes popular culture by storm. Not that I don't like eclectic writers like Kurt Vonnegut and Flannery O'Conner. What I like about them is there is truth to their story telling. I didn't get Flannery O'Connor  for a long time and I studied her work until I did. Too many people I respected liked her work. It was worth the effort.

I'm not the religious sort. God believes in me more than I do in him. This is a healthy relationship in my opinion. I have met writers talking about angels on high and God's truth revelating through this world of sinners in a cataclysmic trumpet call and flashing of lights. Which makes me think, are you living a life or dreaming about whats to come.

God is more simple for me. I feel his presence like the hymn words "He walks with me, he talks with me." I never feel abandoned in my faith. Even when I have had trouble believing, he was there patient in my corner.

I don't think God is there to protect from every ill. I even think death is a part of life which I am not in a hurry to get to. On facebook, a childhood friend keeps everyone updated on the health trials of a gospel singer she is a fan of. He is in pretty bad shape.

The wife of this singer compares his illness to a great fight between Jesus and Satan. I can understand her desperation to keep the one she loves. In the bible it says all of our deaths are made by appointment. I wonder if she is prepared to care for a body with no mind.

That last part seems pretty cold. You might remember the hysteria of Terry Schiavo who was brain dead and the big fight between the husband and family to take her off life support.

I sat in a meeting of mothers and fathers of adult children with developmental disabilities and a lawyer who was discussing trusts and the best ways to leave care for their children behind when they pass. This is Georgia so it was a conservative audience. He talked about Terry Schiavo during the height of the hysteria and not one parent reacted. They all understood brain death.

My great aunt would constantly talk about what a horrible husband Terry Schiavo had. She had a brother-in-law who has a brain tumor which is probably the cause of his dementia. She is angry they will not operate. She is angry at a local hospital because her sister died about two months after having her hip broken at 84.

I am 40 years younger than my aunt. At 56, I already know I am lucky to be alive. As you get older, health issues are a reality.

This blog was to talk about magical realism but I did not get near that. However, for the non-religious, I got there. Have a good day today and enjoy the present.

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