“I can remember how when I was young I believed death to be a phenomenon of the body; now I know it to be merely a function of the mind-and that of the minds of the ones who suffer the bereavement. The nihilists say it is the end; the fundamentalists, the beginning; when in reality it is no more than a single tenant or family moving out of a tenement or a town.”
-Peabody (Chapter 11)
Chapters eleven through fifteen starts off with Mr. Peabody visiting Addie to Addie dying. Mr. Peabody knows Addie I going to die and is happy because Anse is trifling. He wonders why women want men that treat them like pack-horses. Addie calls for Jewel right before she dies, but he left to go make three dollars. When Addie dies everyone is in shock and the person who took it the hardest was Vardaman. Dewey Dell tries to persuade Mr. Peabody to help her. Vardaman went through the first stages of grief. He feels like Mr. Peabody has killed his mother. Anse made Dewey Dell cook dinner and while they ate, she went to the barn to start think about a young fellow named Lafe. She found Vardaman in the barn and thought he was spying on her. Vardaman starts questioning where his mother went and why God made him a country boy and not a town boy.
Mr. Peabody: town’s doctor
Vardaman: Addie’s youngest son
I noticed that Chapter Thirteen was in Darl’s point of view, but Darl wasn’t there. I inferred that the events that occurred in this chapter was told to Darl.
I also noticed that Vardaman was really the only one who took it the hardest. He went through the beginning stages of grief. He was in denial when he was like that wasn’t his mother. Then he was mad because he felt like Mr. Peabody killed her and abused Mr. Peabody’s team. Next he starts to question God about why he take her and make him a country boy instead of a town boy. Finally he just broke down and couldn’t stop crying.
Preceding Addie’s death a storm approaches and it gets dark outside.
I think Dewey Dell is pregnant by a boy named Lafe because she keeps thinking about him and moaning his name and wants Mr. Peabody to help her. Dewey also said she couldn’t worry and pregnant women are not supposed to worry. She also tells the cow that what’s inside of the cow can’t beat what’s inside of her.
Cash and Anse seems to quickly get over the death of Addie on the slick. Although they can’t look at each other they move on with their lives. A normal husband would breakdown and hurt. Anse is hurting, but he wants to be seen as a man so he keeps his self around company. Anse also seem detached from everyone now.
Mr. Peabody seems to know everything and I think he is the smartest person in this book so far. He knows all the town’s business, like Tull using Anse for money. Anse is trifling and treats his wife and daughter horribly. He also knew that women were accustomed to that life and wasn’t going to change it either. He also knew the different types of people concerning death. He said that “death is just a function of the mind.”
At this point in the book, I have a soft spot for Vardaman. He’s the youngest child of Addie. He doesn’t know how to control his feelings and doesn’t know how to process this. The poor guy doesn’t even have a real family to help him through this tough time.
My least favorite character is Dewey Dell. She is real selfish and sneaky. She was mad when she thought Vardaman was spying on her because she messed up and got pregnant. She was happy and sad that her mother died, which is sick. She was nice to Vardaman for a whole second when he was crying.