Monday, February 11, 2013

Pauper's grave

According to wikipedia:

On June 28, 1953, Julia de Burgos left the home of a relative in Brooklyn, where she had been residing. She disappeared without leaving a clue as to where she went. It was later discovered that on July 6, 1953, she collapsed on a sidewalk in the Spanish Harlem section of Manhattan, and later died of pneumonia at a hospital in Harlem at the age of 39. Since no one claimed her body and she had no identification on her, the city gave her a pauper's burial on Hart Island, the city's only potter's field. Eventually, some of her friends and relatives were able to trace her, find her grave, and claim her body. A committee was organized in Puerto Rico, presided over by Dr. Margot Arce de Vázquez, to have her remains transferred to the island. Burgos' remains arrived on September 6, 1953 and funeral services for her were held at the Puerto Rican Atheneum. She was given a hero's burial at the Municipal Cemetery of Carolina. A monument was later built at her burial site by the City of Carolina.
This is not a Quakerly story.  It bothers me that they think that she deserves better than a pauper's grave because she is a poet.  Does this mean that paupers who are not poets deserve the pauper's grave?

No comments:

Post a Comment