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An April Not For Her Eyes

Terri Schiavo died today, starved to death; her organs and eyes swollen and cracked with dehydration, her heart beat ceased because blood does not feed the dead and the dried.

Regardless of where one falls on the end-of-life issues brought to light by this all-around tragedy, nobody can argue that her death was dignified or humane in the least. I have seen editorials attempt to persuade that dehydration and starvation is a peaceful way to die and that she may have been given morphine. Why the morphine if eyeballs cracking in their sockets is so serene?

The truth is that all living things cry out for nourishment and water. There is nothing “artificial” about what was sustaining her life. The mode of delivering the nourishment was artificial, but so are baby bottles.

Today is the last day of March, the last day of her life. She will not see April. It wasn’t promised to her and it isn’t promised to any one else, either. From T.S. Eliot’s The Burial of the Dead:

April is the cruelest month, breeding
Lilacs out of the dead land, mixing
Memory and desire, stirring
Dull roots with spring rain.
Winter kept us warm, covering
Earth in forgetful snow, feeding
A little life with dried tubers.

Isn’t it amazing that what seems so dead during a winter is actually shockingly and greedily alive. The lilacs spring to life, the flowers and grass too. They appear dead, but there must be something, the smallest kernel of life deep inside holding out for those drops of melted snow.

3 comments to An April Not For Her Eyes

  • Mary

    Very well said. I agree 100%. BTW we miss you back at the board…

  • Joanne

    Isn’t it pathetic that the reason Terri was in the state she was in was because of an eating disorder, and then to die because of lack of water/nourishment? A bit ironic, I believe.

  • Sad indeed. Hopefully she’s in heaven now in her new heavily body. Able to walk, talk, smile and speak. No longer suffering, no longer thirsty. May she rest in peace.

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