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Saturday, July 9, 2011

Annie Dillard

"Write as if you were dying.  At the same time, assume you write for an audience consisting solely of terminal patients.  That is, after all, the case.  What would you begin writing if you knew you would die soon?  What could you say to a dying person that would not enrage by its triviality?"

American Writer
1945 -

These are not idle statements.  Death puts a very different perspective on what we do.  What would you write if you knew you were dying?  Do you have a few final stories to tell or poems to write?  What would you paint?  Would try to create something you have never created or would you paint the same thing you have always painted?  Or would you write at all?  Would let go of your creative impulse?  

What would you write if no one would criticize you?  What would you paint if you knew that no one would laugh?  What would you sing if you knew that people would clap?  

Death is about saying goodbye to what we know.  Death is about letting go of material objects that have been a part of our lives.  Death is about forgetting.  Death is a door through which we all must walk whether we are painters, writers, doctors or lawyers.