Monday, April 14, 2014

The Second Chance at Love

        In Walker Percy's The Second Coming, Will Barret has a second chance at love through his relationship with Allison. Will was married to a kind woman called Marion. The marriage was basic but unfulfilling for Will. Percy never mentions a sex life between the two and when Marion became confined to a wheelchair, their relationship became the type where one is taken care of and the other is not. Will gave Marion his attention and care, but she did not give him the type of attention he needed. Everyone knew Marion as a wonderful and kind woman, which she was, but as people offer Will their condolences for her death, he seems absent and out of touch, as if her passing was an event to be expected and that he never really processed it. He is by no means happy about her death, but at the same time he does not experience true sorrow because their relationship was not enriching for him. Yes, he loved her, but the type of love was a passionless but committed love.

            When Will meets Allison for the second time after falling out of the cave shaft, their relationship blossoms immediately. They are two halves of a whole. She picks him up when he falls down from seizures and he interprets her unique way to using language. They can experience true love because they each fulfill something in the other, despite the difference in their age. They are genuinely attracted to each other and when they lay next to each other, Allison naturally clings to him. Allison experiences love for the first time with Will and he has a second chance at love with her, which luckily, he chooses to pursue. For Will, this is the first time that he experiences love that is fulfilling for his soul. Allison can take care of him despite his disease, and he can take care of her despite her memory problems. They complete each other through their wholesome relationship. Will also experiences God through her because she signifies a "gift" from a "giver." So through this second chance at love, Will finally experiences God in his life.

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