This is a poem that was written by Martha Medeiros, a brazilian writer and journalist. This was originally published in Portugese with the title “A Morte Devagar” which translates to “A Slow Death“.
Here is a translation of the original poem into English.
A Slow Death (A Morte Devagar)
by Martha Medeiros
It’s a slow death for those who don’t exchange ideas or converse, and for those who avoid their own contradictions.
It’s a slow death for those who become the slaves of habit, following the same route every day and buying the same things at the grocery store. Those who never change pace, don’t risk wearing a new color, and don’t speak to strangers.
It’s a slow death for those who make television their guru and their daily partner. Many can’t afford a book or a ticket to the movies, but many can, yet they isolate themselves in front of a tube of images that brings information but shouldn’t, in just its few inches, take up so much space in a life.
It’s a slow death for those who avoid passion, who prefer black over white, and dotting i’s over a whirlwind of unshakeable emotions, exactly the kind that bring back the glimmer in our eye, turn hiccups into smiles, allow us to take heart in the face of trip-ups and dark moods.
It’s a slow death for those who don’t turn the tables when they’re unhappy at work, those who don’t risk trading certainty for uncertainty to chase a dream, those who, at least once in their lives, don’t run away from sound advice.
It’s a slow death for those who don’t travel, those who don’t read, those who don’t listen to music, those who don’t laugh at themselves.
It’s a slow death for those who destroy their self-esteem. It could be depression, a serious disease that requires professional help. Then those who don’t let themselves be helped wilt every day.
It’s a slow death for those who don’t work and don’t study, and most of the time it’s not an option, it’s destined: then a silent government can slowly kill a large portion of the population.
It’s a slow death for those who spend their days complaining about their bad luck or the rain that never ends, giving up on a project before starting it, those who don’t ask when they don’t know about something or don’t reply when asked about something they know.
Many people die slowly, and it’s the most ungracious and treacherous death, because when she is truly close, we’re too out of shape to go on for what little time remains.
May tomorrow, then, take its time before it’s our time. Since we can’t escape a sudden end, let’s at least avoid death in easy installments, reminding ourselves always that being alive requires a much greater effort than simply breathing.
Translation Courtesy : Mark Pixley – https://www.markpixley.com/
And another popular version of the same poem going around on the internet.