kurt vonnegut, jr. 1922-2007

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11 Comments

  1. Dirtgrain
    Posted April 12, 2007 at 9:30 am | Permalink

    “No. No. Because I’m eighty-three years old. The lying bastards! On the package Brown & Williamson promised to kill me. Instead, their cigarettes didn’t work. Now I’m forced to suffer leaders with names like Bush and Dick and, up until recently, ‘Colon.'”

    RIP

  2. dorothy
    Posted April 12, 2007 at 10:41 am | Permalink

    my heart broke a little today. one of the greatest writers gone but not forgotten. it’s like the day hemmingway died. no more wonderful stories from him. wah!!! rip indeed.

  3. Dr. Cherry
    Posted April 12, 2007 at 11:11 am | Permalink

    “I tell you, we are here on Earth to fart around, and don’t let anybody tell you different.”

    — Kurt Vonnegut

  4. egpenet
    Posted April 12, 2007 at 1:04 pm | Permalink

    I’m happy you didn’t confuse Kurt’s “escape from the cage” with Mr. Squirrel’s “fall from the cottonwood tree.” The image of your neighbor finishing off Mr. V would have beeen too very bizzaro … as would Clementine drawing picture after picture of Kurt madly typing away.

    Do not go gentle …

  5. Dave Morris
    Posted April 12, 2007 at 2:40 pm | Permalink

    I am currently reading ” In Praise of Darkness” by Jorge Borges. It was written in 1969- the year Vonnegut wrote “Slaughterhouse 5” and the year I was born. The passage I was on when I discovered he died seemed aptly appropriate.

    A Prayer

    Thousands of times, and in both of the languages that are a part of me, my lips have pronounced, and shall go on pronouncing, the Paternoster, yet I only partly understand it. This morning – July 1, 1969 – I want to attempt a prayer that is personal, not inherited. I know that such an undertaking demands a sincerity that is more than human. First of all, obviously I am barred from asking for anything. Asking that my eyes not be filled with night would be madness; I know of thousands of people that can see, yet who are not particularly happy, just, or wise. Time’s march is a web of causes and effects, and asking for any gift of mercy, however tiny it might be, is to ask that a link be broken in that web of iron, ask that it already be broken. No one deserves such a miracle. Nor can I plead that my trespasses be forgiven; forgiveness is the act of another, and only I myself can save me. Forgiveness purifies the offended party, not the offender, who is virtually untouched by it. The freeness of my “free will” is perhaps illusory, but I am able to give, or to dream that I give. I can give courage, which I do not possess; I can give hope, which does not lie within me; I can teach a willingness to learn that which I hardly know myself, or merely glimpse. I want someone to repeat a cadence from Dunbar or Frost or that man who, at midnight, looked upon that tree that bleeds, the Cross, and to reflect that he heard those words for the first time from my lips. None of the rest matters to me; I hope that oblivion will not long delay. The designs of the universe are unknown to us, but we do know that to think with lucidity and to act with fairness is to aid those designs ( which shall never be revealed to us).

    I want to die completely; I want to die with this body, my companion.

  6. Ken
    Posted April 12, 2007 at 3:16 pm | Permalink

    Oooo, dat deep, Dave.

    I think KV would sum up his dying with the words, “So it goes”. That wacky Unitarian!

  7. Dave Morris
    Posted April 12, 2007 at 3:50 pm | Permalink

    Yes, Ken. “So it goes” is much more succinct.

    There was a nice Vonnegut quote on NPR this morning. It was something along the lines of music is all he needs for proof of God’s existence.

    He was an interesting fella. If I remember correctly, his writing was one of our mutual interests way back. That and making loud noises with amplifiers and guitars!

  8. Ken
    Posted April 12, 2007 at 4:02 pm | Permalink

    You forgot beer on that list, my friend!

  9. Dave Morris
    Posted April 12, 2007 at 4:48 pm | Permalink

    Yes. Beer and cigarettes too. I wonder if you can still buy things with Camel dollars…..

  10. mark
    Posted April 12, 2007 at 7:47 pm | Permalink

    So it goes, indeed.

  11. Chelsea
    Posted April 14, 2007 at 12:18 pm | Permalink

    You know, about ten years ago, I heard him speak in Boston and, the next day, attended some kind of master class he was giving in writing. (It was part of the Boston Center for Adult Education’s writers series.) He was a great speaker, entertaining teacher (from what I could tell in that brief time) and world-class curmudgeon.

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