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The Centenarian

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The Centenarian

by Will E. Ingersoll

Genre: Drama
Format of Original Source: Short Story
Recommended Adaptation Length:

Candidate for Adaptation? Promising


The alcove where the old man’s bed stood was only separated by a thin partition from the room where the young couple slept; and the sounds of their frolic, as they chased, slapped, and cast pillows at each other, came to him companionably enough as he drew the blankets up about his big, shrunken chest and turned the broad of his back to the comfortable hay-stuffed bed-tick.

But all the merry noise and sociable proximity of the young people staved not off the great joust with loneliness this mighty knight of years had before he slept–a loneliness more than that of empty house and echoing stair; more than that, even, of Crusoe’s manless island; utterly beyond even that of an alien planet; of spaces not even coldly sown with God-aloof stars–the excellent, the superlative loneliness of one soul for another. It is a strange, misty, Columbus-voyage upon which that hardy soul goes who dares to be the last of his generation.


Promising set-up: a young couple needing to share quarters with an ancient man.


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