Death Stood Knocking On My Door

One evening as I readied myself for sleep-
Prayed to Odin if I should die, my soul to keep-

When a gentle knocking intruded on my quiet solitude-
I thought to myself, whoever would be so rude-

Treading quietly, I looked out so I would know more-
Death stood knocking on my door-

I opened the door and bid him enter in-
Giving his cape some respite from the wind-

Looking at my old friend I asked, then is it time for mine to cry-
Do I need to make ready my mind for when the Light ask why-

I did this wrong, or passed by one in need-
Or spoke in anger, thus planting a bad seed-

Of negative ripples through generations-
Leading to unforeseen situations.

Where did I win, where did I fail-
Is it then time for me to sail-

Those waters again to the other side-
Where my line, my brethren, my forebears do abide-

Shaking off the autumn chill-
He grinned and said I don’t have for you a transportation bill-

Your time is not yet, but it will come one day with some setting sun-
You and I shall ride again together, as many times before we have done-

But tonight I wanted a cup of coffee and a chat with an old friend as I wait for a death certificate to be signed
A lost soul down the street, fighting a losing battle for retention of earthly life past it’s prime-

I made him a cup of coffee, hot as hell, and black as sin-
I saw his eyes twinkle and his lips turn upward in a grin-

Death said I see you remember how I like my drink while I am on duty as I am now and make it just right-
But I recall while I was on vacation once, drunk as skunks we raced chariots through the streets of Rome at night-

And how about the time you took me swimming with you off Pharos a bit-
When I told you the ship was sinking, and you snarled, I don’t give a shit-

The time you took me along on a raid of a Church of Roman Monastery-
How as we sacked the place and cut their throats, they prayed to their Virgin Mary-

Or when you gave me so many souls, their blood spilled upon the burning sand-
The times you fought to take and keep the fabled Holy Land-

The years we attacked the British again and again, against overwhelming odds, midst hunger cold and doubt-
If the people would stay the course, pay the price, or do a cowardly turn about-

When we rode with Lee in defense of country, family, home-
When you and I watched them fold the flag, fire the shots, then leave your body there alone-

How we charged the lines in France, and raced across Europe in a bloodbath-
Oh the death, the destruction, the lives lost, the mournful howling of the ones who tasted of our wrath-

But no, your time is not up, this is just a good drink and a good chat between very dear and old friends-
You have duty yet to do on this rock before I am allowed to return you to homeport, but from the trends-

I will be traveling through here more often it seems-
Don’t want to interrupt your memories of long times past in your dreams-

But I would admire to stop when I can if in during day or middle of the dark-
In the hours after when whores call it a night, and the dogs are left owners of the night to bark-

Any time I said, and meant every word, death is my oldest friend here upon this place-
The first one to greet me millions of year ago when I began this race-

He set his cup down gently as I opened the door and walked him to the street-
We quietly listened to the far off din of long haul trucks, and dogs barking when they did meet-

He said I must go, the soul has finally given up the fight-
Now I must transport the confused soul to stand before the Light-

I will return again for more drink and chat when I pass this way once more, and perhaps a tale-
Welcome said i, and give my regards to the women of Valhalla, and the keeper of Hel-

We embraced as old comrades do, who have seen and done much together when young-
He said sorry to leave you here in this place alone among-

These clueless sheep, these wasted lives, this ME!-ME!-ME!-
What a different world it could be if they could only see-

They must look inward for salvation from repeated lives wasted in pursuit of divers lust-
They must understand it is not punishment, but the books of accounts must be kept just-

Until that time, confusion will reign and business will be good-
Hel, I got several more coming up in this general neighborhood-

He seemed to disappear into the wind as it shook the trees-
I stood alone except for a cat purring as he rubbed circles around my knees-

The circle of life, is the circle of death and rebirth-
This is the true history of Humanities time upon this earth.

Death is not to be feared but celebrated, as he takes your hand-
He is just the transporter of souls, to distant shores of another land-

As I lay my head down for some rest-
I still thought it was best-

So now as I lay me down to sleep-
I pray Odin my soul safe to keep-
If this body should die before I wake-
I pray Odin my soul to take-
Where in Valhalla’s halls we shall eat meat and drink mead-
Practicing for the day when Odin shall lead-
His sons and armies against evil in their last fight-
Hail Odin, Hail Valhalla, Hail our ancestors in their might-
But should I wake in the morning to struggle on down life’s way-
I shall try to do so with a firm step, while keeping the hounds of Hel at Bay-
Give me strength to stay the course-
Until Death comes for me once more, riding a dark horse.

The Ole Dog