Springingtiger's Blog

Death Sits On My Shoulder
May 19, 2013, 21:05
Filed under: Uncategorized


Since I was a child Death has sat on my shoulder, keeping me company through my daily activities. He has accompanied me on unsupervised climbs and down potholes. He was with me when I sliced the artery in my wrist on a window. He was with me tonight in the taxi as the driver watched Indian League Cricket on his phone while negotiating the evening traffic. He has been with me on tall buildings as I have contemplated the possibilities of flight.


When I was young I accepted his presence but largely ignored him, I was not interested in anything he had to say, nor in any lessons he may have had for me. I am older now and Death is still with me, he had been with me, in recent years, through the deaths of friends and family, and now I listen to his voice.


Now Death is urging me more and more to live every moment. Again and again he tells me, “Keep this memory, it’s a good one.” and so I take more time to savour the events of my life. Whether it is something spectacular, like a Mavericks concert, or getting caught in a sudden downpour with the woman I love, I hear him whispering, “Treasure this moment.” Every day he points me to so many things, the evening light on red sandstone, morning birdsong, fresh dew, the funny things my granddaughters say. He reminds me to hold hands and hug more because there will come a day when these things are no more available to me. When I tell him that I intend to be around for another thirty or forty years, he replies, “So live them, fill them with wonderful memories!”


There will come a time, Death tells me, that all I will have to sustain me is my memories. At the end, he tells me, if I get my memories right I shall go from here joyfully, rejoicing that I truly lived; and in the memories that others share I will live on, so that instead of tears they will be left with laughter. And so Death and I go through my days collecting memories and smiles, building a happy anticipation of a happy end.


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