21 July 2012

Longing: "I'd tell him that..."


In an interview with The Telegraph, Joan Didion puts words to wishful longing after her husband died:
But one of the aspects of Dunne’s absence that has troubled her most frequently is the way she keeps thinking of things she would like to tell him; her office at the end of the dimly lit hall continues to face the one he used and, especially in the months after he died, it was often hard to remember that his was no longer occupied. Today, she says she still finds herself wanting to share things with him, although not as often as she once did. Towards the end of our conversation, I wonder what she does now with these thoughts, when they occur to her; what does she do, instead of telling John?
“Instead?” she asks in surprise. “It’s not an either-or situation. I don’t tell anyone. I just keep it to myself.”

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