Agamemnon to Odysseus: "As I lay dying, the woman with the dog's eyes would not close my eyelids for me as I descended into Hades."
William Faulkner wrote often in the manner of stream of consciousness (spewing the rantings of his characters' often-disjointed interior monologues) and he didn't do too badly. Nor did Thomas Wolfe and others. Only Relax Max seems to be doing badly at it.
To begin with, they had promised Addie they would carry out her wish to be buried in Jefferson.
Anse is the father of all of Addie's children, save Jewel, who, of course, was the product of Addie's extramarital relationship with her preacher, Rev. Whitfield.
Rachel (Sampson's wife) can hardly hide her disgust; she is all indignant at the way they seem to be disrespecting Addie by dragging her coffin all over the place. But, in order to get to Jefferson from here, one must... travel... there with the coffin. You see.
The late professor Robert Fagles' translation of that passage of the Odyssey: "But she, that whore, she turned her back on me, well on my way to Death - she even lacked the heart to seal my eyes with her hand or close my jaws."
Relax Max can't help but humbly disagree. To him, Homer's Odyssean waters are never THAT shallow: why can't the woman be exactly what Agamemnon says her to be? Why can she not simply have large sad, loving, eyes? - a woman who just can't bear to see her lover die, can't stand to see his life slip away; willing, even, to try to stand between her love and Charon? As if not closing his eyes or binding his jaw will somehow deny Hades? Why does her lack of action have to be callous? Why does EVERYTHING have to be an allegory?