by Terry Pratchett
Death Quotes in Nation
How we cite our quotes: (Chapter.Paragraph)
I am become like Locaha, measuring the contours of death. (2.23)
Mau thinks this when he has to bury his entire tribe at sea. It's a very serious moment, but we have to ask: how do you measure the contours of death? With a tape measure? And does knowing how big it is make it easier to deal with?
This [man] didn't worry [Mau], not after the memory of yesterday. [...] This was just a dead man. He didn't know him. People died. (2.72)
To deal with the insane amount of death the wave brought, Mau has to detach himself from reality. What other defense mechanisms does Mau employ, and does he do so consciously?