Saturday, February 17, 2024

the last book I ever read (King: A Life by Jonathan Eig, excerpt seventeen)

from King: A Life by Jonathan Eig:

Though he was supposed to speak that evening at Mason Temple, King asked Abernathy to fill in, saying he felt sick and needed to rest. King was in his pajamas when Abernathy called and asked him to come to the church. “The people who are here want you, not me,” Abernathy said.

A thunderstorm raged outside. On the last night of his life, King wore a long black raincoat over his suit and tie. People reached out to touch him as he stepped in the door and down the aisle to the pulpit.

Thunder echoed. Wind rattled the windowpanes. Shutters banged. Abernathy made the introduction. King spoke without notes.

“Something is happening in Memphis,” he said. “Something is happening in our world.”

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