. . . I am but dust."
Sir Walter Raleigh
"By my honor, friend, answered Zarathustra, there is nothing of which you speak. There is no devil and no hell. Your soul will be more quickly dead than your body: fear no more!"
The man looked mistrustful. "If you speak the truth, he then said, I lose nothing when I lose my life. I am not much more than an animal, that one has taught to dance, by blows and small wounds."
"Not so, said Zarathustra, you have made danger your profession, that is nothing to scorn. Now you go to ground for your profession; for that I will bury you with my own hands."
As Zarathustra said this, the dying man answered no more, but he waved his hand, as though he sought the hand of Zarathustra to thank him.
Nietzsche from Thus Spoke Zarathustra
The damp of the night drives deeper into my soul.
Come lovely and soothing death, Undulate round the world, serenely arriving, arriving, In the day, in the night, to all, to each, Sooner or later, delicate death.
Praised be the fathomless universe, For life and joy and for objects and knowledge curious; And for love, sweet love — But praise! O praise and praise, For the sure-enwinding arms of cool-enfolding Death.
I see Hermes, unsuspected, dying, well-beloved, saying to the people, "Do not weep for me, This is not my true country, I have lived banished from my true country — I now go back there, I return to the celestial sphere where every one goes in his turn."
Oh Me! Oh Life! of the questions recurring, Answer
That you are here - that life exists and identity,
That the powerful play goes on, and you may contribute a verse.
Desire is but a flame in the darkness of oblivion that will be put out. It is a resignation not to despair or to confusion but to the clarity of human fraility and the courage to rest in its inevitable fate. A passion for life must include a resolute acceptance of death. The past a dream, the future a hope, this moment is life.