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Hoplessness

Calling the Dead

Visitors to the Fiji Islands tell of a strange custom of "calling the dead." The one who has suffered bereavement climbs to a high tree of a cliff, and after mentioning the name of the deceased he cries out pathetically, "Come back! Come back!" The heart-rending wail is filled with despair with only the mocking echoes to underscore its sad frustration! Those who have recently lost a precious companion, a dear friend, or a beloved child, can well appreciate the forlorn figure. Just imagine the look upon his face as with tears streaming down his cheeks he pitifully continues to plead for the return of his loved one.