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Quotes: Death Tropes
"For no sooner do we begin to live in this dying body, than we begin to move ceaselessly towards death. For in the whole course of this life (if life we must call it) its mutability tends towards death. Certainly there is no one who is not nearer it this year than last year, and to-morrow than to-day, and to-day than yesterday, and a short while hence than now, and now than a short while ago."
Saint Augustine

"Time is not what you think. Dying? Not the end of everything. We think it is. But what happens on earth is only the beginning."
Mitch Ablom

The end of birth is death; the end of death
Is birth: this is ordained! and mournest thou,
Chief of the stalwart arm! for what befalls
Which could not otherwise befall?

"There is nothing frightening about an eternal dreamless sleep. Surely it is better than eternal torment in Hell and eternal boredom in Heaven."

"I haven't earned my heavenly reward and I don't deserve eternal damnation. All I want is some peaceful rest."
Paul Smith

Ancient Egyptians believed that upon death they would be asked two questions and their answers would determine whether they could continue their journey in the afterlife. The first question was, "Did you bring joy?"
The second was, "Did you find joy?"
Leo Buscaglia (who was not an expert in Egyptian religion)

"Life is pleasant. Death is peaceful. It's the transition that's troublesome."
Isaac Asimov

"I long for death, not because I seek peace, but because I seek the war eternal."
Cardinal Armandus Helfire, "Reflections on the Long Death", Warhammer 40,000

Curse the death in vain.
Imperial Proverb, Warhammer 40,000

Don't think of it as dying. Just think of it as leaving early to avoid the rush.
Death

Mort: My granny says that dying is like going to sleep.
Death: I wouldn't know. I have done neither.

It's the dream where you fall in six foot deep hole!
— "Black Wings of Death" by Running Wild

I am tired of tears and laughter
And men that laugh and weep;
Of what may come hereafter
For men that sow to reap:
I am tired of days and hours,
Blown buds of barren flowers,
Desires and dreams and powers
And everything but sleep.
[...]
From too much love of living,
From hope and fear set free,
We thank with brief thanksgiving
Whatever gods may be
That no life lives for ever;
That dead men rise up never;
That even the weariest river
Winds somewhere safe to sea.
Algernon Charles Swinburne, "The Garden of Proserpine"

Arthur: Is this revenge because I killed your father?
Steve: You killed him? I thought he just died.

"Death is nothing to us, since while we exist, death is not present, and whenever death is present, we do not exist."
Epicurus

"Men must endure, their going hence even as their coming hither. Ripeness is all."
Edgar, King Lear

Guiderius: Fear no more the heat o' the sun,
Nor the furious winter's rages;
Thou thy worldly task hast done,
Home art gone, and ta'en thy wages:
Golden lads and girls all must,
As chimney-sweepers, come to dust.

Arviragus: Fear no more the frown o' the great;
Thou art past the tyrant's stroke;
Care no more to clothe and eat;
To thee the reed is as the oak:
The sceptre, learning, physic, must
All follow this, and come to dust.

Anything you can turn your hand to, do with what power you have; for there will be no work, nor reason, nor knowledge, nor wisdom in the nether world where you are going.

A slumber did my spirit seal;
I had no human fears:
She seemed a thing that could not feel
The touch of earthly years.

No motion has she now, no force;
She neither hears nor sees;
Rolled round in earth's diurnal course,
With rocks, and stone, and trees.
William Wordsworth, A slumber did my spirit seal

Every breath we draw wards off the death that is constantly intruding upon us. In this way we fight with it every moment, and again, at longer intervals, through every meal we eat, every sleep we take, every time we warm ourselves. In the end, death must conquer, for we became subject to him through birth, and he only plays for a little while with his prey before he swallows it up. We pursue our life, however, with great interest and much solicitude as long as possible, as we blow out a soap-bubble as long and as large as possible, although we know perfectly well that it will burst.
Arthur Schopenhauer, The World as Will and Representation

There was a time in my own melodramatic boyhood when I became quite fastidious in this respect. I would look at the first chapter of any new novel as a final test of its merits. If there was a murdered man under the sofa in the first chapter, I read the story. If there was no murdered man under the sofa in the first chapter, I dismissed the story as tea-table twaddle, which it often really was. But we all lose a little of that fine edge of austerity and idealism which sharpened our spiritual standard in our youth. I have come to compromise with the tea-table and to be less insistent about the sofa. As long as a corpse or two turns up in the second, the third, nay even the fourth or fifth chapter, I make allowance for human weakness, and I ask no morAs soon as one is born, one starts dying.e. But a novel without any death in it is still to me a novel without any life in it.

"As soon as one is born, one starts dying."
Luigi Pirandello, Henry VI

Yo juego con la carta más segura
no importan los vaivenes de la suerte
aquí donde me ve, yo soy la Muerte.
El precio de la última aventura.
Yo soy mucho más fuerte que la vida.
Yo soy la última rima del poema.
Mi voz en todo acorde siempre suena
y con cualquier camino yo hago esquina.
translation 
Alejandro Dolina, Lo que me costó el amor de Laura: "Tango de la muerte".

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