I read Oscar Berg the judgment ordering his execution as
handed down by the Central Administration for his act of
using official hours to research and write a history of
the last Tsar of Russia. As Berg was led down
the corridor he began to sob and to beg. When
he caught sight of the gallows, he relieved himself in
his pants and began to thrash about. Suddenly he clutched
his left shoulder, whimpered, “I don’t feel well,” and collapsed
and died of cardiac arrest. This is not the way
I would have had it. Please accept my sincere condolences.
New York Public Library
Paraphrases from the story “Manners of Dying” by Yann Martel.