• suicides-1
October 7, 2016

Rippled from the Headlines /// 1


She was in a wooden chair barely large enough for a child, her head covered with a white cloth, blood running through like sticky jam, the fabric sealed to the wound. No one knows her name yet. No one knows how long she’s been dead, but the coroner estimates at least two days. The police department encourages us to presume, whenever possible, that the wound is self-inflicted. Studies consistently show a great deal of depression this time of year. We ask ourselves, without ever really answering the question, what our own lives amount to. The investigation will continue in accordance with the usual protocol. This is Arizona, the Americas, a suburb of Mexico City. The weather hasn’t changed, and won’t.

On the 24-hour news channel, a celebration of the writer’s death with commentary and anecdotes from the usual experts. Voices from the right as well as the left, acknowledging the loss. Wistful smiles and sober reflections. Some for but somewhat against. Some mainly against but also, considering certain aspects, for. Some absolutely for, one hundred percent, the guy was a genius. Some essentially against, never especially impressed by him to be honest but, in the spirit of the day—his day—for. Even the famous only die once. “Then he just slipped his toe between the trigger and the guard and—poof!—blew his brains out.” “Wow.” “Yeah.” “Wow.” “I know. Just like he said he would.” Madman? Hero? Something everyone can agree upon: “What a complicated personality!”

A 38 year-old inmate at the minimum security prison in N— hung himself from the ceiling of his cell. A 22 year-old in the R— prison, a few miles south of Pont-sur-Seine, also hanged himself. Another 38 year-old prisoner died of an apparently deliberate overdose of Demoral. This last had recently undergone surgery for torn ligaments in his knee. Many prisoners have a hard time accepting the interruption of the lives they were leading outside, in the uninterrupted world. Some, it is reported, are unable to comprehend the temporary nature of imprisonment. Only a small percentage of inmates who display symptoms of depression claim “grief” or “remorse” as primary causes for their unhappiness. More than half, however, assert that the current political situation has contributed significantly to their emotional despair.

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