If you find the text too small to read on this website, press the CTRL button and,
without taking your finger off, press the + button, which will enlarge the text.
Keep doing it until you have a comfortable reading size.
(Use the - button to reduce the size)

Today's quote:

Wednesday, October 28, 2020

It can stop at any moment


One day there is life. A man, for example, in the best of health, not even old, with no history of illness. Everything is as it was, as it will always be. He goes from one day to the next, minding his own business, dreaming only of the life that lies before him. And then, suddenly, it happens there is death. A man lets out a little sigh, he slumps down in his chair, and it is death. The suddenness of it leaves no room for thought, gives the mind no chance to seek out a word that might comfort it. We are left with nothing but death, the irreducible fact of our own mortality. Death after a long illness we can accept with resignation. Even accidental death we can ascribe to fate. But for a man to die of no apparent cause, for a man to die simply because he is a man, brings us so close to the invisible boundary between life and death that we no longer know which side we are on. Life becomes death, and it is as if this death has owned this life all along. Death without warning. Which is to say: life stops. And it can stop at any moment." From "The Invention of Solitude"

Today would've have been my best friend's hundredth birthday. It's doubtful he'd ever have received the Queen's telegram, but neither should he've passed away as early as August 1995, just two-and-half months short of his seventy-fifth birthday.

We'd been friends for almost thirty years which at that time had been for all of my adult life, and his passing left a vacuum which has remained to this day. He was that man who, "in the best of health, not even old, with no history of illness", died "simply because he is a man."

It was "Death without warning," and the suddenness of his passing left no room for thought at the time, but I've been remembering him ever since. Rest in Peace, Noel Butler!

Googlemap Riverbend