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of confusion when your judgment is clouded, an instant of

blind aggressiveness. In any case, a person with a wish to

disappear will never know if she came close to acting on the

idea or not.

In a town where I spent several of my summer vacations a

few years ago, I met a woman who certainly had many

reasons for detesting life: a husband who abused her,

economic problems, depression, and a long list of

misfortunes. More than once, as she wept in despair, she

voiced this curious sentence, “I swear, if the train came

through this town, I’d have already thrown myself under it!”

And yet, the train passed through the next town over. She

had only to walk four kilometers.

I have lunch with my friend O. For days I’ve been asking

her for books on the grieving process; I want to know

what’s in store. Today she remembered and when we’re

saying goodbye, she pulls something out of her bag.

“I brought you what you asked for the other day,” she says.

“Ah, great!” I reply, thinking that today I’ll have reading

material to fill the sweet truce of night.

But it’s only two sheets of paper, two sheets with the title: