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3- " O h , S t e a l M e A w a y f r o m M y D e a t h . . . " I was very distant from m y father, s o for me his death was not the death of a loved one, but death as such. And I saw that spectacle for the first time. I don't understand it, and I didn't understand it even when I witnessed th e whole process, but a t moments th e sense of obliteration reache s such intensity, such clarity, that it overwhelms all other feelings. Parnok wrote this to Gurevich a t the beginning of January 191 3 after sh e had received a letter from Lyubo v Yakovlevna that "mad e a ver y stron g impression " o n her . Gurevic h ha d onc e agai n ex pressed he r fait h i n Parnok' s poetr y an d ha d aske d wh y sh e ha d decided to leave Petersburg an d the career she had finally begun t o make fo r hersel f there . Parnok replie d tha t sh e had becom e awar e of a profoun d chang e i n herself . Almos t withou t he r noticin g it , her "consciousnes s ha d bee n reborn, " an d everythin g tha t ha d seemed necessar y t o he r befor e ha d no w becom e unnecessary . Sh e linked the change to her father's death , which had made her realize that sh e lacke d a vocation . Sh e realize d tha t literatur e ha d bee n merely a n occupation whic h sh e preferred t o others and had take n up becaus e othe r career s wer e les s appealing . He r feelin g tha t al l 89 90 "OH , STEA L ME AWAY FRO M M Y DEAT H . . . " occupations were superfluous ha d a deleterious effect o n her work . In going to Petersburg she had thought, wrongly, that what wasn' t coming from inside coul d b e summone d b y externa l stimuli . He r decision t o retur n t o Mosco w therefor e seeme d t o he r "a n ac t o f the most elementary conscientiousness. " O f course , her Petersbur g friends an d well-wishers , includin g Yuli a Veisberg , di d no t agree . They told her that in leaving the capital, she was signing a warran t for he r ow n bankruptcy . Parno k realize d ver y wel l th e financial consequences o f passin g u p a journalisti c caree r i n Petersburg . "Yes, I di d sig n m y nam e t o insolvency, " sh e wrot e Gurevich , "because my pride meant more to me than my vanity." * From anothe r standpoint , though , Yako v Parnokh' s deat h wa s an unforesee n boo n t o hi s oldes t daughter . I t free d he r fro m hi s immediate presenc e an d thu s allowe d he r t o begi n th e proces s o f coming t o term s wit h he r "distant " progenitor , who m sh e ha d loved, long ago, in her nearly forgotten, "carefree " infanc y (befor e her mother' s death) , bu t wit h whom , sinc e then , sh e ha d stub bornly refused t o admit any spiritual kinship. Because she so assiduously reinforce d an d asserte d he r father' s absenc e i n he r life , i t had continue d t o b e to o painfu l a woun d withi n her . Whe n sh e went hom e t o witnes s he r father' s dying , i t fel t t o he r agai n a s if she wer e no t relate d t o him , an d no t a membe r o f hi s family , neither a loya l son , lik e he r brother , no r a dutifu l daughter , lik e her sister , bu t merel y a spectator a t a public event. Sh e denied hi s death's relevanc e t o her, claimin g it was not th e death o f a...

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Additional Information

ISBN
9780814725047
Related ISBN
9780814712214
MARC Record
OCLC
47011689
Pages
355
Launched on MUSE
2012-07-25
Language
English
Open Access
No
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