PREPARE FOR WHAT? A Lifetime unfolds and he, near the end of day, is sitting quietly gazing out from the high serene coastline of this familiar country, contemplating the twilight, as it slowly overtakes the day, presaging dusk and darker stuff. And a shadow passes before him.

They speak to him of these current events in euphemisms that are of a more agreeable and delicate nature. “Sorry to cause you such a fright. How thoughtless and unreasonable of these circumstances to disturb you, as you merely want to get on with what needs doing. Not long and they’ll be gone. No need to worry. This is just a fitful dream unreeling in the nether margin of timeless ether — not a cause for concern!”

And he believes this siren song, because there is so much entertainment and distraction that needs doing and so little time. In his personal, illusory world the premise that there is no end to his days, remains unchallenged; how else would he be motivated to get out of bed tomorrow? Listen as the voice of reason implores, “Have you seen it? Have you ever yet breathed your final breath? Do you have evidence of an impending end? Do not give it another moment of thought!”

But, of course he has seen it with his own eyes. He has watched, heard, and yes, felt as another’s dying breath was released like ruthless punctuation after the last word of the last sentence of the last chapter of another’s life. And he has been entertained (and mesmerized), many times, in high definition as cinematic lives were extinguished, eyes wide, blood flowed, heads rolled, men, women, and children breathed their last. And all without any pain or inconvenience on his part.

This is not avoidance, it is rationalism. “You are— immortal, exempt,” dear, sweet Denial whispers in his ear. “You are the exception to the the impending onslaught. Relax.”

Thomas Fideler

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