By Donald Denoon
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Extra info for Afterlife: A Divine Comedy
He must have been amusing Himself privately for several millennia. ‘As a matter of fact, We could offer you the Earth, but in present circumstances you could gain no benefit. ’ He was getting a lot of private pleasure from playing with my speech patterns. I wasn’t at all comfortable with His irony, so I almost missed the bomb-shell. ‘On previous occasions …’ He began. Previous occasions! What on Earth (silly phrase) did The Almighty have to consult about? And who would They engage? I’d give my right arm to see the contracts, if I really had one, but of course contracts would not be written, much less visible, and 46 afterLIFE certainly not public.
I judged her twice as beautiful, sensual and mature as humanly possible. She didn’t correct me — she could never believe how intensely I adored and how little I understood. Of course there was immense physical attraction: she was gorgeous and I was 17. But I was also beguiled by her directness and a simple honesty that was almost naivete. When I collected my wits, we went to the Paragon for ice cream sodas. When we got past that first awkwardness, our conversations were deeper, wider-ranging — and much more earnest — than I ever engaged in at home or in class.
CLASS STRUGGLES I n high school, as in society at large, there were mutually exclusive classes. Teachers allocated us to streams the day we arrived, prophesying how each would perform and what each could achieve. All kids — except Aborigines of course — had to stay at school until age 15. It was not mandatory, although that was how it felt, for boys to quit on their 15th birthday or at the end of the next football season and sign on as apprentices. If their attendance and attention were erratic, none of the teachers bothered.
Afterlife: A Divine Comedy by Donald Denoon
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