I find it hard to conceive
that one day all that I am
will be dissolved, gone, ended,
disintegrated into fundamental
parts that become integrated into
something else that is not me.

I know that this is the way of
life: the essence of being a
creature, given back to the
earth that has to reclaim the
fullness of what was offered
as the debt of life itself.

No talk of heaven or hell,
or some place beyond this
piece of earth that has fed
me at its breast, will comfort
me, for religion is that unsolvable
quest to reconcile the nothing
that must come to all that lives.

For me there is no eternity in another
realm or immutable soul that goes on
forever, or comes back in another form,
for this is the mortal desire to hold on
to that which cannot be ours to hold.

Eternity, that is it, eternity is
the word, for I can never come
again-this is me, and this is it,
and this is all the life I have
to live as a creature caught
in the ravelling of time and place.

So I will face my demise one day,
maybe tomorrow (who knows),
but will it be with courage or fear
or satisfaction about the life I’ve lived,
or shall I refuse to give it up this dearest
thing I own, and have the menacing shadow
long and dark come and take it away from me?