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Thursday, May 30, 2013

"On Longing for Death"....

is a poem written by The Maestro, who has been so gracious as to allow me to post it here. It is a very thought-provoking reflection about the yearnings we have in this life, and how they are only a small taste of what exists in the next life. The poetry has excellent fluidity, as well...I am really impressed!

P.S. This is ironic, but I believe the blogger over at New Sherwood who publicized and spread abroad my Robin Hood piece last year is The Maestro's father! What go's around come's around, for it's a small blogosphere, after all...;-)

On Longing for Death

Each night I sleep, my body to restore,
Yet morning rise, as weary as before.
The day renewed, such newness life has not:
Each day is with the same despondence fraught.

Down on my knees I pray my daily prayer;
Yet, with it, consolation is but rare.
My faith is threatened at its very root,
And in my heart arises grave dispute.

My duties I perform mechanically,
A mere observance of necessity.
Success comes not with pleasure nor delight,
But only adds unto this wretched plight.

In health or illness, burdens never cease,
In rest or labor, never have I peace.
Alas, this life holds no true joy for me,
But ‘tis a tank of parched aridity.

What goodness that there is upon this earth,
Whatever hath true beauty or true worth;
Such things have little joy for me in store,
But only stir a want for something more.

If life holds not for me what my heart craves,
What left is there for me except the grave?
If troubles haunt me at my every breath,
Why should I not desire the sting of death?

Ah, death, thou door to blissful liberty!
To many minds thou art a penalty,
A defect that our nature must endure –
But nay, to me, thou art a needed cure!

A man might think of death and cower in fear:
Yet ‘tis the only thought that gives me cheer.
For death provides for me the sole relief
From all this world of sorrow and of grief.

In death I am released from this dread cage,
And sundry sorrows finally assuaged.
In death my soul at last can fly away
And free itself from life’s monotonous ways.

But lo! For all my grief-filled heart’s desire,
There is a settled time I must expire.
This time alone may I my death expect,
Or death itself will lose its sweet effect.

Till then, I must in waiting persevere,
For not in vain hath Fortune placed me here,
But that I may my duties well perform,
And brave the agitation of the storm.

Unless I do what God hath had in mind,
Then even death itself will not be kind.
Unless I act in concert with God’s grace,
I shall not ever look upon His face.

"Ah, death, thou door to blissful liberty!"


  1. And now you are getting me started on one of my favorite subjects - what Tolkien called the Divine Paradox.

    "On the one hand, death is the triumph of Satan, the punishment of the Fall, and the last enemy... On the other hand, only he who loses his life will save it. We are baptized into the death of Christ, and it is the remedy for the Fall. Death is… Satan’s great weapon and also God’s great weapon; it is holy and unholy; our supreme disgrace and our only hope; the thing Christ came to conquer and the thing by which he conquered.”
    - C.S. Lewis, “Miracles”

    “Creatures are not born with desires unless satisfaction for those desires exists. A baby feels hunger: well, there is such a thing as food. A duckling wants to swim: well, there is such a thing as water…. if I find in myself a desire which no experience in this world can satisfy, the most probable explanation is that I was made for another world.
    “If none of my earthly pleasures satisfy it, that does not prove that the universe is a fraud. Probably earthly pleasures were never meant to satisfy it, but only to arouse it, to suggest the real thing. If that is so, I must take care, on the one hand, never to despise, or be unthankful for, these earthly blessings, and on the other, never to mistake them for the something else of which they are only a kind of copy, or echo, or mirage. I must keep alive in myself the desire for my true country, which I shall not find till after death; I must never let it get snowed under or turned aside; I must make it the main object of life to press on to that other country and to help others to do the same.”
    - C.S. Lewis, "Mere Christianity"

    And that's all I'll let myself quote for the moment. : )

    - Katherine