Adelma, The Afterlife?
Invisible Cities by Italo Calvino is a surreal novel that leaves the reader unsure if he/she is coming or going. Marco Polo converses in a garden with Kublai Khan on a daily basis and tells him of the travels that he has experienced. We are met with many different descriptions of cities, some light and some dark. The novel describes a world of constant uniformity. Although there is a wide sense of travel throughout the novel, there is also a sense of stagnation. We are taken on voyages to many different cities but at the same time all of the cities are hypothetical. In Cities of the Dead 2, Polo describes the city of Adelma. Adelma is a city of depression and death. When Polo first arrived at Adelma he was met with darkness. It almost seems as if the appearance of the city was a foreshadowing of how the city was going to materialize. Darkness is sometimes associated with death and in some cases it could be a synonym. Maybe since Adelma is a city of the dead, it is never dawn, it is always dusk. Upon entering the city he is met with dark observations. While observing the city, Polo is met with many different characters that sometimes resemble people that remind him of deceased friends and family members. This city is very frightening to him and to save personal anguish he does not dare to look at anyone else in the face. He then realizes that he might also be the one that is being recognized. "Perhaps, for each of them, I also resembled someone who was dead"(95). Polo speaks of the mind running out of room for new faces. "You reach a moment in life when, among the people you have known, the dead out-number the living. And the mind refuses to accept more faces, more expressions" (95). It is a city where you become aware of you age and weariness. The city is different compared to the other cities mentioned throughout the novel because Polo acknowledges his age and the looseness of the human mind. In this city Polo finds...
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