John M. Coetzee (AU)
Suhrkamp Verlag, 2005
Aus: John M. Coetzee. Slow Man. 2005
There are papers to sign before he will be left alone, and the papers prove surprisingly difficult. Family, for instance. Who and where are his family, the papers ask, and how should they be informed of the accident? And insurance. Who are his insurers? What cover does his policy provide?
Insurance is no problem. He is insured to the hilt, there is a card in his wallet to prove it, he is nothing if not prudent (but where is his wallet, where are his clothes?). Family is a less straightforward matter. Who are his fa-mily? What is the right answer? He has a sister. She passed on twelve years ago, but she still lives in him or with him, just as he has a mother who, at the times when she is not in or with him, awaits the angels’ clarion from her plot in the cemetery in Ballarat. A father too, doing his waiting farther away, in the cemetery in Pau, from where he rarely pays visits. (…)
Family: NONE, he writes in block letters, the nurse overseeing, and draws lines through the other questions, and signs the forms, both of them.