The Last Death – A Parable

Old_Man_with_his_Head_in_his_Hands_(At_Eternity's_Gate)

The Last Death

After Franz Kafka

“But death, insofar as it belongs to me and belongs to me alone, since no one can die my death in my stead or in my place, makes of this non-possibility, this impending future of mine, this relation to myself always open until my end, yet another power.” 

– Maurice Blanchot

 

A man once failed to die. He was overlooked, shunned, by the final touch of the reaper. In fact, his death was stolen, most selfishly, by another. And so, taking full advantage of his immortality, the undying man sought out all the pleasures of the world, and once he was tired of all the pleasures of the world, he sought out all the great intellectual pursuits, and once he answered all the questions he could answer and knew which ones he could not, he became an ascetic and a wise-man, and when there was no one else left to teach, he sought out the death that he had lost. One day he found it buried deep at the ends of time, but when he held it he found that it had grown fragile and rotten with age, and the final death withered to dust in his hands. And the deathless man sat down at the end of time and wept.

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