Wednesday, August 11, 2010


While I refer to this citation for an upcoming parish bulletin front simply by observing its use in Evelyn Waugh’s Brideshead Revisited, it’s also important to see the use of the quote by the French painter Nicolas Poussin (see above). In its own way, the painting and the citation (inscribed on the tomb) are a reflection of the words of Thomas More both in the trial scene and the final scene of A Man For All Seasons: “Death comes for us all, my lords; yes, even for kings he comes…”; “Death comes for us all, Meg; even at our births, Death does but wait a little…”

St Augustine expressed the thought in this way: “For those who know they are to die, it is clear how we ought to live.”

It’s an idea we shy away from on a regular basis until some terrible event brings the reality home to us in ways we cannot ignore.

If we knew today would be (in the words of the poet John Donne, alluded to famously by C. S. Lewis) “the world’s last night,” how differently would we live? It’s just a thought…

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