Sunday, March 11, 2012

Day Seventy-One: "Propriety" by Bret Lott


A man wakes up months after his wife's death and realizes that it's the first day of a new kind of mourning. He doesn't sense her in their house anymore. She's suddenly yet gradually been reduced to objects like her hairspray, her vitamins, her clothes still hanging in her closet. Does he go to work anyway, after waking to this realization? Does he try and move on, take another step in the direction of having a new life? Can he even say what it is that is happening to him on that morning? What if he does? Will she disappear from him forever?

This was a beautiful story about how one deals with grief after a tragic loss. Set in Charleston in the summer, the narrator is drenched in heat and humidity and yet there is an iciness to his demeanor and his approach to it all until the very end where we find him sitting in a chair on his porch whispering his wife's name into the morning air.

I absolutely loved this story. Beautiful and sad but not melodramatic. A must read in my opinion!

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