Monday, November 18, 2013

Mary Wesley Offers To Pose In A Coffin

The cartoon caption is I think in Danish - Google Translate is unhelpful in translating any of it.
There are 32 contributors to the book I am reading 'Loving It All' - Eminent New Zealanders Write About Growing Old - (See last post) - To date Marcia Russell's story 'Regrets For The Things I Did Not Do' is the best in its encouragement of 'its never too late' and the idea that ones 'prime' is a very relative concept - she writes:

"........ Fay Weldon does a good line in women terrorists - so does Mary Wesley. The latter burst out of the attic at the age of seventy-one and scandalised her well-bred family and friends by writing about them, thinly disguised, in nine malicious and hugely entertaining bestselling novels. Wesley reached her prime in her seventies and eighties and is a great role model for all women moving into their eighth decade. She sharply challenged social assumptions about the old, confessed to bad behaviour and recommended a vigorous sex life.

A few years before her death she had her own coffin handcrafted and finished in red Chinese lacquer and used it as a coffee table in her sitting room. When Country Life magazine came to do a feature on her, she suggested they photograph her sitting up in it. It would have been a wonderful illustration of life as a death-defying experience but apparently the magazine declined."

I say the world needs more people like Mary Wesley.


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