Reflections on a Death

Much has been said and written about the death of Osama Bin Laden and no doubt much more will be added in the days and weeks to come. However, for me, John Donne captures the essence of the issue best of all.

No man is an island,
Entire of itself.
Each is a piece of the continent,
A part of the main.
If a clod be washed away by the sea,
Europe is the less.
As well as if a promontory were.
As well as if a manner of thine own
Or of thine friend’s were.
Each man’s death diminishes me,
For I am involved in mankind.
Therefore, send not to know
For whom the bell tolls,
It tolls for thee.

John Donne


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