The Democracy of Death

I saw this on Facebook the other day.  It was shared by one of my Facebook friends from a page titled The Mind Unleashed.  I like the idea of a 'mind unleashed.'   I have frequently said that I've cultivated a 'disobedient mind.'  But I think I like 'unleashed' better.  



As that wonderful bumper sticker says, "Well Behaved Women Seldom Make History."  Well behaved men seldom do either.  Of course, who cares?  I mean about making history.  We are still such a young species, no more than a blip, not yet as long lived as were our Neanderthal ancestors.  Yes, I read recently that all people on earth, with the exception of sub-Saharan Africans, carry Neanderthal DNA in their cells.  I liked that.  So, Neanderthals were not a failed species after all.  They live in us!  I love the fact that I carry Neanderthal DNA.  I'm also glad that, unlike that capricious autocrat called Life, Death is unfailingly democratic, and even handed or, as the poster says, our graves will be the same size.   



This is a photo I took of a graveyard at a monastery in Ireland (at the Glendalough Ecclesiastical Settlement in County Wicklow) It was founded by St. Kevin in the 6th century.  I was told that some of the graves here date as far back as the Viking Invasion of the isle.  The Viking invasions of Ireland began in year 830 A.D. and lasted through much of the 12th century.  Hence, that would make some of the graves in this cemetery over 1,200 years old.


  Although 830 A.D. seems like a very long time ago, it is, in fact, only a tiny fraction of the 4.54 billion year history of planet Earth.  Just thinking about 4.54 billion years makes my head it's unleashed!


Judging from the magnificence of these Irish gravestones and monuments, I suppose this graveyard was the final resting place of the upper classes, probably nobility and churchmen.  






And this sad looking little grave yard is one of the 92 family plots that were seized by the U.S. federal government in 1943 for the Manhattan Project.  This one is located behind some houses in Woodland next door to a Weigels convenience store and gas station on South Illinois Avenue, not more than a mile away from the gates to the Y-12 National Security Complex.  Y-12 is the bomb factory in Oak Ridge, where nuclear warheads are maintained and the nation's store of bomb grade uranium is safeguarded. (Well, we hope it's safeguarded.  The penetration of the shoot to kill zone by the elderly Catholic nun, Sister Megan Rice, and her two companions called Y-12's security into serious question a couple of years ago.) 


One of these photos depicts the graves of the high and mighty, and the other, the graves of the poor and humble.  Superficially different, the actual graves in these cemeteries surely are much alike, for Death treats us all the same.   


And finally, here is a little something, maybe a prose poem or maybe just a scribble, I wrote last week while drinking coffee in the early a.m. in my bed. 

The Democracy of Death

Death is a democracy, egalitarian and even handed, drafting every soul to soldier alone into that most melancholy country where ardent, lusty worms writhe in sightless eyes and penetrate the flesh of rich and poor alike; and I, for one, am glad to know that Death is impartial, a democracy, egalitarian and unfailingly even handed. 

And on that ironically cheerful note, be well and good luck!  

Martha Maria 

P.S.  My new children's album, Lily Cat's Very Good Day, by Lily Cat Music for Kids, should be up on iTunes in the next few days!  Yea!  And I want to share a wonderful message a fan sent to me about that album:

 "I think you are promoting peace and harmony on a grass roots level."


In case you don't want to wait for iTunes, you can buy it here:    

('s cheaper here too!)


As always, I ask you to share anything you find here that you like.  My only advertising is word of mouth from kind folks like you.  Thank YOU! 

1 comment

  • Susie Williams Taylor
    Susie Williams Taylor
    Beautiful Martha....I could listen to your music/lyrics all day as well as read your entries!

    Beautiful Martha....I could listen to your music/lyrics all day as well as read your entries!

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