Review: On Grief by Jennifer Senior
Suffering, or the prospect of it, is the price we're willing to pay for the bonds we make.
This is terrific journalism.
I've done my fair share of feature writing classes, read my fair share of Pulitzer winning pieces, and I can confidently say this one deserves its spot up there among the best. I do think its original title "Twenty Years Gone" is more fitting than "On Grief", as this is a specific story, not a general reflection (obviously, this is no fault of the actual writer).
The structure is phenomenal and the photographs really elevate the overall impact. Jennifer Senior is a force, but I can't finish this review without mentioning the endearing brilliance of its subject: Bobby McIlvaine. We only get a glimpse of him, but what we see is special. He loved and cared and lost. He had so much to say, so much left, but I'll leave you with only one of his quotes—the one that struck me the hardest.
Is youth really just a hobby?
It shouldn't be. Oh Bobby, it shouldn't be.