HOW DO YOU WANT TO DIE?

HOW DO YOU WANT TO DIE?

Sometimes
my living
and my
dying
get all mixed up.

Sometimes I ask myself
“How do I prefer to die….
Sooner? Later?
Here? There?”

These fantasies and realities
of living and dying
become more poignant
more pressing,
more precious,
more necessary,
as I pass my years.

I have two choices:
to ignore it
(“and get on with my life”)
…. or confront it
(and actually hallow my reality).

I made the latter
choice some years ago,
while reading
Old Age
by my mentor, Helen Luke.

Now,
I am just beginning
to see
my own
dying and death
as normal
and inevitable
and very worthwhile
for me.

My, how aging mellows things!
Well,
I cannot escape it,
that’s for sure!

While in the depths
of a relentless ten-year
dark night of my soul
era
I awakened one night
sweating and
in deepest anguish
as I heard myself
saying aloud,
“I want to die
before morning comes;
The pain of my
existence is
simply too heavy
to bear.”

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IF I CAN LIVE

IF I CAN LIVE

Sunrise in Puerto Vallarta, pix by Hal Edwards

If I can live
into the face of
living and dying
into my final breath,
and into death itself,
with
every amend made,
every prayer prayed,
every inner idiot embraced,
every debt paid,
every relationship healed,
every opposite integrated,
every imperfection owned,
every gift offered up,
then my act of dying
is an offering of love
which can never perish.