Albert Camus’ grave, Lourmarin

The Canadian Broadcasting’s program “Ideas” this week concerns the life and work of Albert Camus.

Like so many young people in the late 1950’s and early ’60’s, Camus affected me deeply. Visiting Provence in 2011, I made a point of traveling south across the Luberon range from where we were staying in Bonnieux to the town of Lourmarin, which had been Camus’ home.

We visited the cemetery, where Camus is buried. The grave impressed me with its simplicity. No grand monument befit a great man, it consisted of a plain slab with a generous planting of lavender. It was late in May. There had been other visitors, who had left evidence of their presence with lavender bloom tenderly pressed into the lettering on the slab.