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zhanghongxiang
how to understand the “ sacrificed”? But I found Lisbon, beneath her smile, grimmer than my dim cities. I have known, you also may have known, some of those particular families who reserved at their tables the seat of a dead relative. They denied the irreparable. But I did not think that that challenge could be of any consolation. The dead must be thought of as dead. Then they acquire in their role of death another kind of presence. But those families hindered their return. They made them absent for ever, late guests for eternity. They swapped their mourning for a vain hope. And those homes seemed to be plunged into an uneasiness far more overwhelming than grief. Pilot Guillaumet, the last friend I lost, was shot down on airmail service. Well I have accepted his death. Guillaumet will change no more. He will never be here again; neither will he be absent. I have sacrificed his place at my table, as a useless illusion, but in his death he remains my real friend.
Feb 13, 2014 1:44 AM
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Answers · 4
The metaphor seems to be that some families hold on to the memory of the deceased and never move on, forever pretending that the deceased will some day return the same. The narrator is saying he accepts the death of his friend, and by saying he sacrifices (an act of slaughtering an animal or person or surrendering a possession as an offering to God or to a divine or supernatural figure.) his place at the table, he means he has let go and remembers him with out wishing for him back.
February 13, 2014
It is like saying, "I have given up his place at the table..."
February 13, 2014
zhanghongxiang
Language Skills
Chinese (Mandarin), English
Learning Language
English