As she talks about career prospects, mentions war, wonders about the evolution of spatial sciences and much more, she demonstrates that there is a lot to talk about and many things to reconsider.
Talking here appears as the first step to ‘make something happen to the world,’ the wish she ultimately enunciates in The Opposite of Loneliness.
Yet, in a dazzling essay called Song for the Special, she writes about her jealousy towards every other person who appeared to be more successful than her.
In the eponymous essay, The Opposite of Loneliness, she mentions private insecurities too.
“What bothers me is this idea of validation, of rationalization,” she notes. are doing this because we’re not sure what else to do and it’s easy to apply to and it will pay us decently and it will make us feel like we’re still successful.” In “The Ingenue,” a young woman who realizes that the man she is about to marry can’t be trusted, and her character thinks, “How utterly I’d been reduced. Betrayed.” In “Winter Break,” a child navigates the messiness of her own romantic entanglements while watching her parents’ marriage crumble.
These are crises that ultimately shape our lives, and yet, so often, we only hear about them in hindsight.She discreetly points out that we never really judge ourselves based on who we are or what we do. It is the 21st century, and it has never been worse: our friends carefully display the finest pieces of their lives on Facebook and Instagram, and everyone else’s successes are made widely visible on the Internet.We face all of this daily and can hardly help comparing ourselves to these picture-perfect Internet people.Instead, she writes from that exact place she is at, young adulthood, a time of decisions and crossroads, uncertainty and hope. And isn’t that approach more true to life, anyway, asking questions without finding the answers? In “Cold Pastoral,” a girl slowly, painfully uncovers the secret that the boy she loved was in love with someone else all along.“The notion that it’s too late to do anything is comical,” she says in her opening address to her Harvard graduating class. In “Even Artichokes Have Doubts,” a class of graduates is about to sacrifice their passions at the altar of six-figure salaries.‘I will live for love and the rest will take care of itself.’ These are words Marina Keegan pronounced on her graduation day and the ones with which her parents chose to introduce her posthumous collection of writings.As every essay and every story in The Opposite of Loneliness bursts with love, it seems fair to say she truly did live on for love.Here are some of the things we learned by reading her wonderful Opposite of Loneliness.While she was a student at Yale, Marina Keegan was the shiny, successful person everyone wishes they could be like. Five days after she delivered a speech to her graduating class, her boyfriend was driving her to a party when he fell asleep at the wheel, hit a guardrail, and rolled the car, twice. You can’t read which consists of nine essays and nine works of fiction, without feeling a bit haunted. There’s a certain type of roughness, a raw openness, in Keegan’s prose. She realizes that it is in our youth that we choose the type of person that we want to be. We have so much time.” But, in reality, Marina didn’t. Her parents, friends, and professors gathered her work with vigor, keenly aware of the brilliant mind that had left behind a body of work surpassing her years.