Farewell to My Father
Discourse and dialogue, you always told us, were the most important forms of encounter between human beings; as your children we learned from you to take pleasure in the use of words. You encouraged us to enter into discussions with you, even to contradict you. No subject was out of bounds; every topic we brought in served for a lively exchange. Most of all you loved discussions of German history; philosophical issues were welcome as well. And yet, as we gradually grew older, and our worldviews grew ever more distant from yours, you began to cut off our questions with historical illustrations, and the lively dialogue of earlier times now ended more and more often in your wide-ranging and abstract reflections.