I Finally Figured Out About Dying --- (And I Wanted To Tell You Before It Was Too Late)
I Finally
Figured Out
(And I Wanted
To Tell You
Before It Was
Too Late)

I finally figured out this dying stuff
And thought I'd better tell you before it's too late.
The way it happens is this: we are allowed
To vacate the premises at our leisure.
We can check out today or in a week or year or in fifty years or so
Depending on what's gone on before.

Once we depart, we can scarcely believe our eyes
Since we no longer have eyes
(nor nose, nor mouth, nor body, nor anything to speak of.)
We turn to a soaring fire (or flower) with all our non-senses intact
Broken open to the godly winds that turn us
Neutrinos, photons, eloectrons, protrinos,
florescons, cladesons, fidesons, pico-cansargos-candos:
That's the universe we'll know after we consent to dying (its in our ghostly hands).

With no taste we all taste all;
With no ears there can be no silence;
With no eyes light becomes us;
With no skin, we become everything, everywhere;
With no space, we are all space between here and there
And the fifteen billion billion
arms extend to end our days
(which no longer exist)
and nights (which no longer exist).

And there, my love, is the rub of dead space:
There is no space there, at least no space not filled
With time bent arch back into itself.
There is no lack of anything,
Most of all
Thoughts, thoughts repeated, repeated again,
Thoughts that rustle like meteors
through what they used to call
Who is minding the minds? Your mind? My mind? Mine mind mining my mind?
In other words, thoughts no longer cease when we go to the there there
and with no sleep, they cannot cease
an endless flood of neutrino thoughts
passing through what was once

Old stars, say the space-gods, turn into steel orbs,
Some four-hundred-thousand-godzillion light-years
In width.
A smooth, round, darkly reflective quite heavy but not unsightly
hole without hair.
That is dying.
You and I in a world of pure cast steel
by lights
or stars
or the gods.

When we see (eyeless)
the endless globes of blind steel,
and when we feel (bodiless)
the breast of unfelt all-space,
and when we hear (earless)
the dark cries out of galaxies,
that's when
we accept
their offer
to return
to the

--- ©1977, the Estate of Robert J. Fretwell

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