Everything dies sooner or later, that's the truth of it. I've known people go fast, just wink out of existence as if somebody threw a switch. I seen others cling to life like the last stubborn patches of winter snow hiding from the sun in a north facing hollow.
I can't say that either way is better, not for those they leave behind anyhow. There's always words unsaid or questions never answered, left to hang in the breeze like wind chimes rattling on the front porch of eternity.
Frankie, our old tom cat, he knew. He was a fine ratter in his day, mostly he had the best of it but it wasn't all cream and warm firesides. The scars of life were plain to see, his sixteen years on this earth cost him an eye and a good chunk of ear.
When his time came he just up and left, went over the back fence without so much as backwards glance or a thank you ma'am. It might seem harsh but at least it's clean. I'd like to think I'll have the good graces to do something similar but unlike the cat there's no guarantee I'll ever see it coming.
submitted at 5:42pm
5 May 2012
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