Take a pause. Breathe.

On a run yesterday, I was listening to an audiobook that reminded me that we sometimes get too enamored about numbers – our salary; our weight; hours of sleep; even Covid-19 related deaths.

Because we’re so concerned about the numbers we sometimes forget to live. That is, until we are close to death.

Today because of some news I heard, I needed to take a pause; I searched for life and sought comfort in a book of poetry. I opened a page at random and it fell on the following poem about death called When death comes. I needed this.

When death comes
like the hungry bear in autumn;
when death comes and takes all the bright coins from his purse

to buy me, and snaps the purse shut;
when death comes
like the measle-pox;

when death comes
like an iceberg between the shoulder blades,

I want to step through the door full of curiosity, wondering:
what is it going to be like, that cottage of darkness?

And therefore I look upon everything
as a brotherhood and a sisterhood,
and I look upon time as no more than an idea,
and I consider eternity as another possibility,
and I think of each life as a flower, as common
as a field daisy, and as singular,
and each name a comfortable music in the mouth,
tending, as all music does, toward silence,
and each body a lion of courage, and something
precious to the earth.

When it’s over, I want to say all my life
I was a bride married to amazement.
I was the bridegroom, taking the world into my arms.

When it’s over, I don’t want to wonder
if I have made of my life something particular, and real.
I don’t want to find myself sighing and frightened,
or full of argument.

I don’t want to end up simply having visited this world.

When Death Comes – Mary Oliver

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