I feel so sad about John Updike

As I was sitting on the beach in Belize, writing about the great January 27 snowstorm, John Updike was dying.

He has been a part of my life for so long. Since I first read Couples, in that strange libidinous decade of the seventies. Since my writer friend Terry and I found Shillington on a map and went there; found someone in the Town Hall who knew where his house was; and then, miraculously, found another person who drove us out of town to the house where he unhappily moved at 13. Since I learned he stuttered and had psoriasis.

Terry Gross interviewed him just after Self-Consciousness was published, and she replayed excerpts from that interview yesterday. “It’s a strange thing,” he said, “to be born into a certain body instead of an ideal body.”

Maybe it’s just that I can still listen to his voice, but it does seem as though what was born into that certain body, and left that body Tuesday, is still out there somewhere.

Advertisements
This entry was posted in Death. Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to I feel so sad about John Updike

  1. coffee says:

    the loss of John Updike makes me wonder if the literary world is being replenished at the same rate that it’s losing such great writers

  2. Curtis says:

    Updike was the only “modern” writer who made into English majors’ curriculums when I was in college. He had a beautiful awareness of several worlds. He was an inspiration, though too often tedious, don’t you think? I just don’t get the sadness?

  3. celebratingtime says:

    Some of his writing was tedious and labored – for example I just tried to read The Widows of Eastwick and couldn’t do it (had the same problem with the Witches!). But his short stories in the New Yorker were little perfectly-written jewels, and it is these that I will miss. Plus I used to like to think about him up there writing away in Massachusetts, and now I don’t like to think that his great sensibility is nowhere.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s