The King of Death

This poem came to me from Gerald Ehlman. It is about The King of Death visiting Henry B. Balasaro.


Henry B. Balasaro

The Sun had set and darkness fell
as I sat in my new chair.
There was a knock upon my door.
I said, “Who’s there?”

A voice replied “It’s Death! I’ve come
for you tonight.
Open the door and let me in.
I haven’t got all night.”

I thought, “Who is this joker?
It must be a friend of mine.”
I slowly opened the door,
and chills ran down my spine.

“Oh no! Please, you must have made a mistake!”
Death said, “Are you Henry Balasaro?”
“Yes!” I replied.
“Then it’s you I must take.”

Death said, “Let’s go. I haven’t got all night.”
Henry asked, “Please Death, check again.
Just to make sure you’re right.”

“Fine,” said Death as he opened his book
and turned the page.
“Henry P. Balasaro, lets go!”

With a sigh of relief I let out a laugh
and said, “See Death, you’ve made a mistake!
I’m Henry B. Balasaro!”

Death looked a little embarrassed and said,
“Oh! You’re right, I’ve made a mistake.”

I was a little bit angry and shouted at Death.
“You gave me such a fright!
You should get your facts straight before you
knock on a door and say it’s their night.”

Death looked once more then closed his book,
and stared into my eyes.
He said, “I’m sorry Henry.”

I waited to hear more, and not another
word was spoken. As I slammed the
door in anger, I shouted.
“That’s it! I’m sorry Henry! When you’ve put
me through all this grief and sorrow.”

“You’re right,” said Death,
from the other side of the door.
“I’m sorry Henry. I’ll see you tomorrow.”


 Searching my memory back forty some out years, I remember vaguely that in the Bhagavad Gita, The King of Death ask Arjuna, the hero of the legend, “What is it that most people are ignorant of?” Arjuna has no idea. So The King of Death tell him, “Everyone knows that they are going to die, but no one believes it will happen to them!”

The Tibetans have a saying, something like, “Death is known to everyone, but the time of death is uncertain.”

What do you think of the fate of Henry B. Balasaro?

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