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Maya is forced to go to the funeral, because Mrs. Taylor left her a fake-gold brooch in her will, and Momma thinks this obligates her to attend the service, at least. At the funeral, Maya is confronted with the reality of death for the first time; she never considered before that she herself could die, not just old people. During the service, the preacher opens the coffin and directs his eulogy directly at the corpse; this disturbs Maya as well as Mr. Taylor, who thinks this is an improper thing to do. The funeral-goes file around to the casket; Maya has to go too, although she loathes the thought of seeing a dead body. She realizes when she sees Mrs. Taylor's body, how strong and how final death is. It disturbs her and interests her, as she grasps how transient life really is.