john bennett | where to go to die

Where to Go to Die

The thing is to die unobtrusively. The thing is to die like you lived, in secret. The thing is to avoid comas and strokes and open-heart surgery and go off somewhere and do it alone, out-of-reach of embalmers and cremators and grave diggers. The thing is to avoid the hospices and the nursing homes.


Your body has been the vessel of your warring soul, it’s sanctified. Don’t let them carry it out strapped to a gurney with a sheet over its face, the face that played host to your sparkling eyes. Don’t let them rouge it up and tint its hair. Don’t let them dress it in a stranger’s clothes and lay it in a half-open casket for people to file by and gawk at. Don’t go in for check-ups, don’t get diagnosed and then set upon by desperate cures. Your body will tinker with keeping itself going until there’s nothing left to tinker with, and then it will let you know how much time is left so you can plan your disappearance.


This is a way to live, not a way to die. Practiced properly it will work except in cases like a car crash or being murdered on a subway platform. Then God will intervene and lift your body into the sky with outstretched arms so all the world can see that we don’t have to go on living the way we do.

0 Replies to “john bennett | where to go to die”

  1. Holy wow, John, this is off-the-map tremendous
    statement of life & death — I’m going to print it out
    so I can stare at it some more —
    Best stuff I’ve ever found on dying is the Tibetan Book of the Dead as well as Sogyal Rinpoche’s renowned book on LIVING & DYING based on
    Book of the Dead —
    Myself, I want a sky burial . . . .

    …..Mark Weber

  2. Mark … glad it touched a nerve with you. Herr Klaus has been very generous in posting my Shards on the Outlaw site. If you’d like to receive Shards as they roll out via email, I can put you on a list; just send your email address to me at dasleben@fairpoint.net

  3. Its times like this I wonder if dying young wouldn’t be such a terrible thing…then I snap outta it again.

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