Sep 22, 2016

Abe Vigoda Dies At 94 (Not a Hoax) — Orlando Sentinel

Written by Dorianne Laux

Read by Erika Carter

“Abe Vigoda is no longer not dead.” –Thomas Dean, Facebook

First he was, then he wasn’t, now he is. Always
and forever. None of this Get back up and dust
those wings off, not like in The Godfather
when he’s told, “Can’t do it, Sally,” only to
show up a year later in The Don is Dead
and The Devil’s Daughter. Isn’t this just the way?
Everyone thinks we died when we’ve only
been languishing in a string of forgettable movies.
Tessio’s death was memorable for happening
quietly, off-screen. The horror of it
was the inevitability of it: the pageantry
of the six men surrounding him, pallbearers
shouldering him away in their solemn brown suits.
And isn’t that just the way? The worst
is not what comes, but what we can see coming,
the unfolding of the moment, whole lives
unspooled and slopped in a celluloid pool at our feet.
What kills us is Sal’s stoic desperation, the naked
dignity of his calm plea. We forget
his lack of faith, his weakness and betrayal.
We gaze into his sad Italian eyes, upon his long
Modigliani face, and we pity him the way
we pity Judas, the way we pity our own small
selfish selves, dying a little with each violence
we’ve committed until someone more ruthless
brings our suffering to an end.