Death may be inevitable
But it is not invariable.
In this moment
Irrespective of what precedes
I choose peace.
I choose reflection
And though imperfect
I venture that I am not alone
That there are others
Facing the very same tragedy.
I could panic,
Panic, however, useless
Is occasionally justified
And a man has a right to paranoia
When he is on the verge of exile.
I’ve always had a taste for apples
For the knowledge of forbidden things.
Death is the ultimate taboo.
When my father died
He became invisible, unspeakable
A curse whose very mention
Invoked the sign of the cross.
If the dead are too ill to speak of
You must forever hold your tongue.
Armor cannot guard
Against the weather
When the imposition exists
Within one’s very soul.
I will face today with dignity.
I will face today with curiosity
For that which I cannot control.
I am no longer a child
But every man whatever his preference
Whatever his intellect
Is without question a student.
Today I learn how to die
I imagine it is a lot like riding a bike
And I suspect that I have done it
Many times before
Though I cannot recall the specific dates.