Ozymandias Retrospects (Epiphany #1: Non-life is death?!)

Death doesn’t smell very nice. Skips showers, I bet.

It stopped by yesterday to visit a neighbour.

And when my neighbour realised, he told his wife he wanted to change his clothes, so he could talk to Death privately.

When his wife came back in, he was already deep in conversation, clothes changed and everything.

When does empathy become suffocating and politeness become intrusive?

It’s hard to tell when you’re walking into your neighbour’s house to pay your respect to his lifeless body and his disoriented wife.

That’s what death does. It drops by to say hello to someone you know, and leaves you wondering – Can it happen that everything that represented you suddenly can’t? If my body can stop being me, was it ever me?

Here’s what I’ve been thinking over the last 24 hours:

Here’s a non-living thing, a rock:

O

Here’s a non-living thing, a dead person:

II______M:

A dead person is dead, not non-living, because they were alive at some point. But what if non-life is just death?

 

Image

Here’s another thought.

A friend used to say that we’re just mediums for energy passing by.

So in death, the energy in us would move on to other forms. We know this is technically true because our dead bodies feed decomposers, feed the soil, become usable energy after hundreds of years.

But to think that we aren’t that special is a disconcerting thought. Not special in life or in death. We’re just bus stops and buses. Vessels of something ordinary. We’re made up of ‘non-living’ material anyway.

Do not stand at my grave and weep

Do not stand at my grave and weep
I am not there. I do not sleep.
I am a thousand winds that blow.
I am the diamond glints on snow.
I am the sunlight on ripened grain.
I am the gentle autumn rain.
When you awaken in the morning’s hush
I am the swift uplifting rush
Of quiet birds in circled flight.
I am the soft stars that shine at night.
Do not stand at my grave and cry;
I am not there. I did not die.

Mary Elizabeth Frye
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