I think of Madge’s mother. Mayor Undersee’s wife. Who spends half her life in bed immobilized with terrible pain, shutting out the world. I think of how I never realized that she and my mother shared this connection. Of Madge showing up in that snowstorm to bring the painkiller for Gale. Of my mockingjay pin and how it means something completely different now that I know that its former owner was Madge’s aunt, Maysilee Donner, a tribute who was murdered in the arena.

Rembering Maysilee. May 2013. Pen & Ink, Photoshop CS6. 

I’ve been rereading “Catching Fire” and one scene that stuck out to me was when Katniss and Peeta are watching the tape of Haymitch’s Games. When Maysilee Donner dies, Katniss parallels the experience to Rue dying in her own Games. I imagine Haymitch would have also made the connection when he watched Katniss’s Games. 

1) One time, when Haymitch was drunk, he walked around the town and came across Madge. He stopped and looked at her for a second, and she asked what was wrong. Suddenly, he began to scream, he began to shout at her, crying, asking her why she had left him alone. Asking why she had to die, why he lived. He was disgusted at himself, to cowardly to kill himself and join her, which was what he wanted. Madge began to cry, not knowing what was happening, and Haymitch stopped, walked over to her and said "Don't cry, Maysilee. I'm sorry." Then she realised.