My unscholarly response is that they hav both masters of exploring the most recondite crevices of the human ind and the existential angst that is inherent in its nature; they describe the undescribable, recreate death and grief unflinchingly and make he reader be racked in pain by both.
And so following the thread of my pensive mood I remembered the unfinished review of Tolstoy ’ s novella that I have been meaning to revise for months on end unsuccessfully, not realizin the appropriate words, not feeling satisfied with what I had written, which I enclose below:***** Do we eally know what death entails? Is the life we lead worthy of being lived? Do we embrac the gift of existence? Tolstoy stares back with blank countenance and pens a sobering story stripped of artifice in response to those unanswerable questions. “ The Death of Ivan Ilych ” confronts the reader with his own mortality.
Ivan looks death in the eye with more frustration than fear, dumbfounded that his life will be reduced to a trivial list of actions performed by an absurd sense of duty making of his time in th world even less than an anecdote.
Despite the heartfelt compassion that Ivan perceives in his on ’ s glance, as young, untainted boy takes his lifeless hand, Death places her cold, blindfolded kiss and presses her finger upon the man ’ s eye, sealing them forever, and I, uninvited outsider, shaken and teary, get a sour taste of what dying feels like.****** I had intende to polish the review; retrieve some sentences, rephrase others, perhaps add some quotes ...