Poetă, actriţă, regizoare, prozatoare
The corpse of the old lady, Agatha, lay rock frozen in her room. She rested there for weeks, covered with a white sheet, waiting for better times when the carnations put on her body would not snap under the fingers of her nice trying to arrange them. There was no need to open the windows to preserve the body; thanks to the Little Nero who ran the country at that time, Bucharest has no heat. Agatha had a sardonic smile, so hideous over false teeth that Olivia hurried to cover it with a napkin. Olivia's mother, Ella, started to hate Agatha, not Agatha herself, but this cadaver they could not get rid of at any cost. Cemetery soil too hard to pierce, they decided to have her cremated. And so did everybody in the same situation, some families having to sleep in the same room with so ironically called "departed".
From the beginning of the situation, Olivia, the niece, managed to get her husband Norel to deal with it. Her father could not cope. He just slept in his room with every item he could gather to put on him, comforters, blankets, coats, even a large plush chair on top of it all. Since his demise as a Minister of Petroleum, he was nursing a severe depression, treated in Romanian style with patience and the foetal position.
As of Olivia's husband, after of a séance of beating and torture suffered in his youth, he had abandoned the practical witchcraft he called Psychology (which he felt had deserted him), and had decided " to mount and ride the tiger", and consequently, now, he worked for the Security of the State. He had climbed the ladder to the highest though hidden level. So he proceeded to act on this matter.
He despatched "Little Hand" his trustworthy subordinate, actually the man who had tortured him years ago, to solve the problem. "Little Hand" paid a visit to the director of Crematorium.
This one obviously enjoying the position he was in, explained that he had a long list of deceased waiting for the City gas to come on so the furnace could work. Affability, promises threats seemed only to add his merriment.
Norel had every official in town telephone and plead with the Crematorium director; after a while the man called Norel:
"Please mister professor" (he had become "Professor of Diplomatic Science"), "I beg you, no more calls. I tell you what, as soon as the gas returns, I will call myself and you bring the lady. I will put you first on the list."
The call came after a good two weeks. The soldiers had succeeded in clearing a path in the snow so trucks could go through the city.
Norel and family took Agatha in the white sheet (there was a short-aged of caskets, also), in rushing on the stairs they got her down and into the army car. It had to be done quickly because the City gas could go off again at any minute. And having been given preference, they were the first to be attended.
In the hall there took place a religious service, because Agatha had insisted on having one. The relatives started to relax.
The Crematorium personnel took Agatha and deposited her on the hearth of the oven, behind the screen. Soothing music help the assistances to gather their wits and adopt the usual pose.
Aurora Cornu, din cărţile publicate
Sweating heavily, despite the cold, the other eyed Norel with irony.
"Do not worry, comrade, we never have enough degrees to burn them. We deposit them until spring comes, and then finish them. It is better for the family. Don't let them know".
"But what about the ashes?" said Norel, looking stupidly at the urn he was carrying under his arm.
"Oh, ashes you want, ashes you get!" said the director. He lifts the cover of a barrel. He scooped up a large helping of ashes and filled the urn. With joy returning, he handed the urn to the Norel.
"This is for Misses. They better get ashes!".
* * *
Aurora Cornu în filmul "Claire’s Knee" (1970)
Sfinţirea Mănăstirii „Sfântul Ioan Evanghelistul şi Cuvioasa Eufrosina” din comuna Cornu, jud. Prahova - 8 mai, 2008
Blogul Scriitorilor Româno-Americani din New York la 5 Ani, 2012
Despre Aurora Cornu:
În vara anului 1958, Aurora l-a părăsit (n.n. pe Marin Preda). Îl prevenise încă de când se cunoscuseră că, atunci când ea va dori să plece, el va trebui să se se împotrivească. Așa că a plecat la Sinaia lăsându-i pe masa apartamentului lor din București un bilet cu doar câteva cuvinte: “Cheile sunt în casa de bani, mult noroc. Aurora”.
Pentru arhiva EXILUL CREATOR apasati aici.