I was about to say “dead”
but that’s a dirty word. People say “passed” or “late”
What did they pass?
What are they late for?
Their heart stopped beating. Their brain stopped whirring.
They are dead. And that’s ok.
When people think of death, they think of corpses.
Covered in maggots,
eyes rolled back in their skulls,
as their best clothes start to disintegrate.
Any clues of the person they were, the life they led, gone.
People don’t fear death. They fear being forgotten.
But it’s impossible to be truly forgotten.
Even if it’s just a signature on a piece of paper,
or a house covered by the passage of time,
the Earth will always remember you,
and the changes you made, both good and bad.
Eventually, we all return to the stars that birthed us.