Fascination with the Dead

No trees survived on the lot where my new house stands. They were destroyed by wildfire in 2011, long before my husband and I began searching this particular county for a place to call home.

One tree on the lot behind ours stands as a reminder of an area once thickly forested. It stands for only a little while longer, we suspect. A house is being built on that lot, and we know that when the yard is landscaped, that dead tree will be a goner.

The Tree

It is beautiful, I think. Naked, though dignified and graceful, while all the trees nearby sport new growth. I expressed my sorrow to my husband over losing it from our view, even though safety requires that it not stay.

Is it strange that I’m interested in something after it is dead or destroyed?

I study the forms of dried flowers and seed pods. Of skeletons, both human and animal. I’m fascinated by the finds from sites of ancient civilizations. I read about dead artists, celebrities, and politicians.

Maybe I truly appreciate and understand the composition of a living thing or a thriving system after its life is over.

Have you read either fiction or nonfiction that focused on the state of death or dying or perhaps a decaying civilization? Were you particularly fascinated by what you read?

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8 thoughts on “Fascination with the Dead

  1. Awakening by Tracy Higley delved into the end of the Minoan civilization. While the modern part of the book made little sense to me, I did enjoy the cultural tidbits and history of the island nation.

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    • Oh, there was one I had the same experience with. Now I can’t remember the title, and I struck it from my Goodreads list. Some novels should be strictly historical. I suppose an author sometimes tries to garner both contemporary and historical readers, but that doesn’t always work.

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      • For some reason she came forward in time so that she could lose her memory and run around in the future while remembering bits of the past so she could go back with seconds to spare to warn her people of impending doom and help them escape. But I’m a meanie who doesn’t believe in reviews unless they are well-rounded so I kept it and reviewed it honestly. 😉

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  2. If the contemporary story is a thinly veiled device for the sole purpose of rationalizing a trip into the ancient past, the story rings hollow. Randy Ingermanson’s City of God Book I blends current events in Jerusalem with the First Century CE.

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  3. Reblogged this on Bird Face Wendy and commented:

    For followers who are nature lovers, poets, photographers, environmentalists, archaeologists, or anyone who has a sensitive side, this reblog from my group blog site is for you.

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