Saturday, September 10, 2022

Death, be not affected

 Don't be mealy-mouthed about mortality. People die. When they do, just say so. 

At the death of Elizabeth II, some reports said that she had "passed" or "passed away." She died. 

Much as your squeamish discomfort with brute facts might tempt you to euphemize, pray don't. 

People die; they do not pass, pass away, pass over, expire, depart, succumb, enter eternal rest, go to be with Jesus/the Lord, go west, cross the bar, buy the farm, pay a debt to nature, rest from their labors, wander the Elysian Fields, breathe their last, answer the final summons, go to meet their Maker, yield up the ghost, ring down the curtain, cash in their chips, shuffle off this mortal coil, join the choir invisible, or climb the golden staircase.


  1. I often wonder, when people say a person "go(es) to be with Jesus," how do they know?

  2. Remembering Monty Python, she is an ex-queen; she’s pushing up the daisies; that monarch is no more!

  3. As a Brit, I was quite bemused when I first heard ‘passed’ used for ‘died’, probably in something like ‘NYPD Blue’. Makes me think of ‘as if but a gallstone on the intestine of life’.
    ‘Kick the bucket’ is the London vernacular of my youth; it has the dull clank of finality about it unlike the a-pealing ‘ring down the curtain’ above. :-)

  4. We used to attend the annual Greek festival at a nearby Orthodox church. Occasionally the festival program would mention that a church member had "fallen asleep in the Lord." That was a new one to me.