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of the time to claim from us
much interest. Necessity's
tedium racked me often,
and if they called me tactless -- '
And I say, `They use that word
in the offi
cial account
of you, in the D.A.B. --
"tall, awkward, slow of speech, and
tactless;" it was tactlessness,
they say, that got you murdered.'
He: `In the nature of things ...'
then pauses and considers.
As he does I realize
the shade of his wife, a small
and meagerly made woman,
is here, and listening
from a place on the far side
of Meeker's corpse. But Meeker
has not noticed her. He shrugs,
looking at the blue-lit corpse,
`Though what a ghost, left over,
has to do with the nature
of things is perhaps too slight
for discussion.' Then the sight
of his wife vivifi es him,
though he looks at her without
surprise, as if she'd come in
from the next room of a house
where they still lived. A silence,
and she watches him mildly;
we all stand, as if waiting,
in what we soon realize
is simply emptiness; so
my voice sounds small when I say,
`In the cosmology of --
of the dead, what are you now?'
Arvilla says, `You would guess