Saturday, 15 December 2007

Looking forward to death...

Flicking through the copy of the New Statesman which arrived this morning I chanced on this quote "Death changes people. We have no idea who anyone is going to be until they die." It's by the playright David Hare in an article about the poet Ted Hughes. So I suppose that's something to look forward to, finally knowing who I was. Even if it's quite interesting in terms of a philosophy of the resurrection, it is rather a shame to not be around to reap the benefits of such knowledge!
The erstwhile prime minister of my country is obsessed with securing his legacy. He may not be dead but any legacy of his will have to be weighed up against piles of dead bodies in Iraq.
So rather than look forward to death or leave the import of my existence to others to cogitate after my central nervous system has shut down, I think I'll just concentrate on finding more meaning in life and allow myself more time to read - tonight a few very short pieces by Walter Benjamin in Kleine Kunst-Stücke. As I was flicking through it I got side tracked by an essay on why when travelling we don't take unread books from our shelves at home but always end up buying crime ficiton at the station. That made me realise that my epitaph will probably be "she was a great reader of pulp fiction". Typical too that I should find such a prosaic piece by so eminent a philosopher of interest (the book is a collection of his satires and short stories).