Ellen is noticeably disturbed by the sight of her dead mother, especially as she is being lowered into the ground at the graveyard. "Why do I need to watch anymore," asks Ellen, consoling herself with the explanation that "it is all done with lights said the magician." This "magician" is a character who appears suddenly during her mother's burial and will reappear with the numerous other deaths and funeral services she must attend in the future. Ellen calls upon this imaginary magician because, presumably, she cannot and does not fully comprehend the absolute finality of death. Although Ellen does not speak specifically of crying about her mother's death, she expresses definite sorrow in not wanting to see her lowered into the ground. The magician helps her cope with her grief, as his use of "lights" and magic make her mother's death more like a trick than a reality. Ellen may believe that, like a magician's disappearing trick, her mother will soon reappear and is comforted by her faith in her mother's return from the grave to the earth.