Part 6 Summary

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Last Updated on May 5, 2015, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 296

In the final section of the story, Rosicky reflects on the future of his children. He hopes that they don’t suffer ‘‘any great unkindness[es].’’ When spring comes, Rosicky decides to pull thistles from Rudolph’s alfalfa field while his sons tend the wheat. The heavy labor causes another heart attack and Polly, calling him ‘‘Father’’ for the first time, comes to his aid. While she nurses him, Rosicky subtly asks Polly if she is pregnant. She suddenly feels that no one had ever loved her as deeply as Rosicky. Rudolph and Polly take Rosicky home, where he dies the next morning.

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The story concludes when Dr. Burleigh, driving to the Rosicky farm one evening, stops by the graveyard where Rosicky is buried:

For the first time it struck Doctor Ed that this was really a beautiful graveyard. He thought of city cemeteries; acres of shrubbery and heavy stone, so arranged and lonely and unlike anything in the living world. Cities of the dead, indeed; cities of the forgotten, of the ‘‘put away.’’ But this was open and free, this little square of long grass which the wind for ever stirred. Nothing but the sky overhead, and the many colored fields running on until they met the sky. The horses worked here in summer; the neighbours passed on their way to town; and over yonder, in the corn- field, Rosicky’s own cattle would be eating fodder as winter came on. Nothing could be more undeath-like than this place; nothing could be more right for a man who had helped to do the work of great cities and had always longed for the open country and had got to it at last. Rosicky’s life seemed to him complete and beautiful. (Excerpt from ‘‘Neighbour Rosicky’’ )

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