Live every day like your hair was on fire

“Praise be to Nero’s Neptune
The Titanic sails at dawn
And everybody’s shouting
“Which Side Are You On?”
And Ezra Pound and T S Eliot
Fighting in the captain’s tower
While calypso singers laugh at them
And fishermen hold flowers …”
– Bob Dylan

“Perhaps they are not stars, but rather openings in heaven where the love of our lost ones pours through and shines down upon us to let us know they are happy.”
– Eskimo proverb

“There are so many little dyings that it doesn’t matter which one of them is death.”
– Kenneth Patchen

“From my rotting body, flowers shall grow and I am in them and that is eternity.”
– Edvard Munch

“I want a priest, a rabbi, and a Protestant clergyman.  I want to hedge my bets.”
– Wilson Mizner

“I meant, said Ipslore bitterly, what is there in this world that truly makes living worthwhile? 
Death thought about it, Cats, he said eventually, Cats are nice.”
– Terry Pratchett

“It isn’t necessary to imagine the world ending in fire or ice; there are two other possibilities: one is paperwork, and the other is nostalgia.”
– Frank Zappa

“I hope the leaving is joyful; and I hope never to return.”
– Frida Kahlo

“Death makes angels of us all and gives us wings where we had shoulders smooth as raven’s claws.”
– Jim Morrison

“For the Persian poet Rumi, each human life is analogous to a bowl floating on the surface of an infinite ocean.  As it moves along, it is slowly filling with the water around it.  That’s a metaphor for the acquisition of knowledge.  When the water in the bowl finally reaches the same level as the water outside, there is no longer any need for the container, and it drops away as the inner water merges with the outside water.  We call this the moment of death.  That analogy returns to me over and over as a metaphor for ourselves.”
– Bill Viola

“What is life? It is the flash of a firefly in the night. It is the breath of a buffalo in the wintertime. It is the little shadow which runs across the grass and loses itself in the sunset. ”
– Crowfoot

“If the only prayer you ever say in your entire life is thank you, it will be enough.”
– Meister Eckhart

“… and, when he shall die,
Take him and cut him out in little stars,
And he will make the face of heaven so fine
That all the world will be in love with night
And pay no worship to the garish sun.”
– William Shakespeare

“O Captain! my Captain! our fearful trip is done;
The ship has weather’d every rack, the prize we sought is won;
The port is near, the bells I hear, the people all exulting …”
– Walt Whitman

“He was a man, take him for all in all,
I shall not look upon his like again.”
– William Shakespeare

“There is a crack in everything, that’s how the light gets in.”
– Leonard Cohen

“Live every day like your hair was on fire.”
– Zen proverb

8 thoughts on “Live every day like your hair was on fire

  1. Rethabile

    I love the Zen proverb and the Eskimo one. I think they’re both right. Asimov has said that “Life is pleasant. Death is peaceful. It’s the transition that’s troublesome.” But I think the transition is more troublesome for us than for the person leaving.

    I know the funeral will go well. I hope everything else does.

  2. Pamela Hart

    This is a great collection of quotes, which I will borrow, if that’s okay.
    Have you encountered/read any Zen master death poems? There’s a great little anthology you might be interested in. Thanks for posting.

  3. Michelle Post author

    Pamela, of course, of course.

    To my PoCo family, Dale, and my other friends and special people – I’m about to get ready for the funeral, which begins at 10h00 (in just under four hours). I’m feeling strong today. All will be well.

    Alan – you are with us.

  4. Esmaa Self

    I was shot over Venus by this one:

    “There are so many little dyings that it doesn’t matter which one of them is death.”
    – Kenneth Patchen

    And invited back to Earth by this one:
    “There is a crack in everything, that’s how the light gets in.”
    – Leonard Cohen

    Thank you for sharing these with us. Blessings and Peace to you.

  5. Michelle Post author

    Esmaa, I love the Patchen quote too. I think he must have been a real character. He also said:

    “Think enough and you won’t know anything.”

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