There are so many new books about dying that there are now special shelves set aside for them in bookshops , along with the health-diet and home-repair paperbacks . Some of them are so 1 with detailed information and step-by-step instructions for performing the function , that you ' d think this was a new sort of skill which all of us are now required to learn . The strongest impression the casual reader gets is that proper dying has become an extraordinary ， 2 an exotic experience , something only the specially trained can do .
Furthermore , you could be led to believe that we are the only 3 capable of being aware of death , and that when the rest of nature is experiencing the life cycle and dying , one generation after 4 ，it is a different kind of process , done automatically and trivially , or more “natural”, as we say .
An elm in our backyard 5 the blight (枯萎病)this summer and dropped stone dead , leafless , almost overnight . One weekend it was a normal-looking elm , maybe a little bare in spots but 6 alarming , and the next weekend it was gone , passed over , departed , taken . Taken is right , for the tree surgeon came by yesterday with his crew of young helpers and their cherry picker , and took it down branch by branch and carted it off in the back of a red truck , everyone 7 .
The dying 8 a field mouse , at the jaws of an amiable household cat , is a spectacle I have beheld many times . It 9 to make me wince . However , early in life I gave up throwing sticks at the cat to make him drop the mouse , 10 the dropped mouse regularly went ahead and died anyway .
1. A. contained B. embraced C. packed D. littered
2. A. and B. even C. yet D. but
3. A. races B. creatures C. people D. human
4. A. the other B. another C. the next D. the following
5. A. caught B. held C. took D. picked
6. A. something B. anything C. nothing D. everything
7. A. sings B. sang C. sung D. singing
8. A. to B. in C. for D. of
9. A. was B. was used C. used D. was about
10. A. but B. because C. while D. in order that