“The Illusion of Death” by Arelin Chavez and Ashley Yuriar
No one knew him
He walked like death himself
Fading in, fading out
With no one next to him
No one to hold him
No one who could need him
He cared for no one but himself
Feared nothing but himself
He visited death multiple times
No one knew
No one cared
Why would they?
They knew nothing of him?
Yet they feared him?
“I, Billy Pilgrim, the tape begins, will die, have died, and always will die on February thirteen, 1976" (141)
Billy Pilgrim’s death is an illusion because no matter how many times he dies he will never really die. The meaning behind will, have, and always will die is the fact that he knows he will never be able to avoid his recurring death. He has said that he will die many times, he even said it to a crowd of people who denied it. Only to be proven wrong when he dropped dead.
“Somewhere in there the poor old high school teacher, Edgar Derby, was caught with a teapot he had taken from the catacombs. He was arrested for plundering. He war tried and shot. So it goes" (214).
“The two scouts who had ditched Billy and Weary had just been shot. They had been lying in ambush for Germans. They had been discovered and shot from behind. Now they are dying in the snow, feeling nothing, turning the snow to the color of raspberry sherbet. So it goes" (54).
“Poor Valencia was unconscious, overcome by carbon monoxide. She was a heavenly azure. One hour later she was a heavenly azure. One hour later she was dead. So it goes" (183).