Page 228 - Jewish Book Annual Volume 46

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220
JEWISH BOOK ANNUAL
These post-academic years were busy, productive, and per­
sonally satisfying. But then, with no warning, on January 22,
1976, after Marie and Charles had enjoyed a pleasant dinner
together, he complained o f indigestion. A doctor was called in
and he diagnosed a massive coronary. Charles was rushed to
the hospital and he died within hours. In her touchingly spare
poem “ Finality,” Marie describes his death and her emotions:
Death, the great kidnapper,
Snatched you suddenly
Asking no ransom.
We were at dinner chatting.
He broke in with two gentle, black attendants
And a noisy ambulance.
When I came back before dawn,
The cups were still on the table
And I was alone.
In the loneliness o f this loss, Marie moved to Santa Monica
— a move she earlier had planned with Charles. Here she would
be closer to her sister, her son and daughter-in-law, and her
grandchildren. She has lived there since, continuing to write,
to lecture, to comment publicly on the current scene, to con­
found her critics on the political left by adding her signature
to “ Peace Now” statements, to remain an irritant to her oppo­
nents on the right, and to continue to live her own version
o f feminist activism. In her ninth decade she has become some­
thing o f a “guru,” receiving a stream o f venerating visitors —
old friends and young admirers.