Tag Archives: Death

carpe diem


This day only is ours,

we are dead to yesterday,

and we are not yet born to the morrow.

But, if we look abroad and bring into one day’s

thoughts the evil of many, certain and uncertain,

what will be and what will never be, our load will be

as intolerable as it is unreasonable.

Jeremy Taylor

theologian, 1613 -1667


jack collier


end of days


That the end of life is not action,

but contemplation ~

being as distinct from doing ~

a certain disposition of mind,

is, in some shape or other,

the principles of all the higher morality.

Walter Pater 1839 – 1894


jack collier


Dad’s Funeral Service

Funerals are busy times.

I think I’m just about prepared for my Dad’s funeral on Monday the 8th.

Bought a new black suit and tie, new white shirt, new shoes.  Ordered a wreath, and I’m thinking about a reading.

Didn’t realise there was going to be so much to do.

I’ll be glad when it’s over.  A lot of sadness in my house today.


jack collier


George Burrows


My Dad died this morning.

At the end it was a blessing that his soul passed on.

If all we leave behind are memories, let us pray they are good.


jack collier


Sea of Sorrow


Drinking from the waters of sorrow

sustains a different kind of life.

This sea is hidden from the rest of the world.

Tears drip of my chin and fall

into an endless flow of liquid love.

This silent sea sparkles with beauty. 


from Todd Nigro

jack collier


dying in the past



last night, dreaming of your past life

something I was not always part of

I was not there for all those problems

so why are there so many bitter tears

when the leading man disappears?


jack collier


neither dead nor really alive

Death is not the greatest loss in Life.

Watching my Dad dying in a nursing home bed made me realise something today.  That modern death is seldom like a light switch.  My Dad wasn’t the vital, elderly gentleman he was just a week ago, and then suddenly dead.  For my Dad death is coming slowly.  He is dying one little piece at a time.

The part of his mind that remains must know this, and I believe that is why he is sometimes very distressed.  He keeps calling to my late mother and his dead sister, (my late aunt), and I have never heard him do that before.

I don’t believe that he is in much physical pain, because the doctors haven’t yet given him morphine.  However, physically, mentally, and spiritually my Dad is suffering greatly.  He has no dignity at all.

A part of me hopes it will be over soon, and that feeling of wanting my father to pass on quickly gives me much pause for thought.  I’m not certain if wanting my father to die swiftly and with dignity makes me evil, or caring.

I have no answers or wider lessons to impart on the modern process of dying.

However, I have learned something important about how to live.

Live life to the full, make your decisions and stick by them, never compromise, and never settle for second best or the easy option.

Death is not the greatest loss in life.  The greatest loss is what dies inside us while we live.  ~  Norman Cousins

Some said that I was a very all-or-nothing guy before, and that I would not live in shades of grey.  All I know is that those people ain’t seen nothing yet.


jack collier


death changes everything

From Brutality Beauty May Arise.

It’s strange for me to realise that deception, deceit, and dishonesty have been swept from what remains of my life.  It happened in an heartbeat.

Yesterday I visited my dying father in his nursing home.  I have never seen the face of a living person look so horrific.  All I can compare him to are the bare survivors of a Nazi Death Camp.  There was nothing nice, caring, or spiritual about the instant experience.  There was the bare husk of a man in an hospital bed, and nothing passed between us.  I don’t even know if he was aware of my existence.

I tried to read from the poetry of Rudyard Kipling, just to let him hear my voice.  I am uncertain if I am proud or ashamed that I was too choked to read more than a verse or two.

What happened to me?  A lifetime was swept away.  All the compromises, illusions, disillusionments, self-deceptions, and self-loathing were picked up and turned to a fine dust that was blown away in a dying man’s hoarse breath.  What was left to me was the very essence of a man, and I am that man.

This was not what I expected or wanted.

I will be there when my father dies, maybe in a day or so, or maybe between 0100 and 0200 on Wednesday.  As he passes I will celebrate his life and his dying.  Unless something passes between us in his last moments, I will not understand the change in me.

How can a man ever understand the fire, the hammer, and the anvil from which the core of steel in his soul has emerged?

Please understand that I am happy  it took the horrific face of my dying father to reveal the true man within my soul.


jack collier


Letter to Myself ~ aged four and threequarters


My inner child,

It was not your fault that you were taken from your mother and put in an incubator, just after you were born.  You were not well when you were a newborn, and they had to put you in an incubator to keep you alive.

I know you loved your nanna, and that she loved you too.  It was not your fault that she went away and left you .  She was an old lady, and she just died.

It was not your fault that she died.  It was not your fault that your parents did not explain that nanna had died.  It was not your fault that nobody told you why she had to go away and leave you all alone.

Your parents did not know how to show you their love for you, and that was not your fault either.

I know you felt abandoned and unloved when you were a very young boy, but you were not to blame.

Please let yourself grieve for your nanna, and let her go to heaven to be in peace with the angels.  Please forgive your nanna for dying and leaving you.  Please accept that she loved you, but now she has gone.

Please forgive yourself, the blame was not yours to take.

Forgive yourself, and live in peace, happiness, and serenity from now on.

All my love,

your older self.




death in love



glimpsed accomplished dreams

overcomes surrounded memories

intermittent tragic vulnerabilities




words and pictures by jack collier     jackcollier7@talktalk.net


%d bloggers like this: