Saturday, October 27, 2012


“And you, Elaine. You'll die, too. And my curse is knowing that I'll be there to see it. It's my torment, you see. It's my punishment for lettin' John Coffey ride the lightnin'. For killin' a miracle of God. You'll be gone like all the others, and I'll have to stay. Oh, I'll die eventually ó of that I'm sure. I have no illusions of immortality. But I will have wished for death long before death finds me. In truth, I wish for it already.”
- Paul Edgecomb, The Green Mile IMDB
I rarely believe in miracles and pride myself that I am not swayed by people trying to convince me of one either. Stephen King’s book “The Green Mile” is phenomenal, the movie adaptation is even better. Although Frank Darabont doesn’t hit the same crescendo as he attains in The Shawshank Redemption, he doesn’t let you down in this one either. The same jail-like settings apply to this one too, and Darabont was adamant to adapt the book’s story as soon as it released in 1996. 
In the movie there is this guy who is abnormally huge and is in death-row for being convicted of raping and murdering two girls, one aged 7 and the other 5. Turns out that this convict has a God-gifted power of healing the sick. He cures the ailing prison guard first {played excellently by Tom Hanks}, then a dead mouse and finally, an estranged women dying a painful death from terminal cancer. What strikes you in the end isn’t the miracles performed, but the result or the scars it leaves on Peter Edgecomb {Hanks}. When he narrates this story to a colleague in an old-age home, he claims to be 104 and still waiting to die. He has seen his family die before his eyes and has to live with the pain of an agonisingly long life each day.
Sometimes I feel how difficult it must have been for him, to wake up and expect death, only to be cheated. We quibble that we do not want to die and how scared it makes us feel to even think about it. I guess there comes a certain time in our lives when we decide that we cannot or do not want to live anymore. Every day becomes a burden, every day reminds us of a haunting past that refuses to perish away, and every tomorrow seems a nightmare, where more close ones will die before us.
I may not understand the human element of a miracle, but this movie gave me something to take back. Miracles happen every day. We survive countless deathly encounters and are never even aware of how fortunate we are. A bus may trample us or a boulder may squish us to pulp. Heck, we might slip and fall in our bathroom! We must be grateful for each day we live, grateful that we have other comforts that people in war zones or areas plagued by disease don’t have. Life in itself is a miracle. Pity, we often are late to recognize it. The clock is ticking. The sands of time fly.

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