27 January 2021

Live Each Day as If It Were the Last

William Drummond  (1585–1649), “Death’s Last Will,” The Poems of William Drummond of HawthorndenVol. 2 (London: Lawrence and Bullen, 1894), p. 31:

More oft than once Death whisper’d in mine ear,
Grave what thou hears in diamond and gold,
I am that monarch whom all monarchs fear,
Who hath in dust their far-stretch’d pride uproll’d;
All, all is mine beneath moon's silver sphere,
And nought, save virtue, can my power withhold:
This, not believ’d, experience true thee told,
By danger late when I to thee came near.
As bugbear then my visage I did show,
That of my horrors thou right use might'st make,
And a more sacred path of living take:
Now still walk armed for my ruthless blow,
    Trust flattering life no more, redeem time past,
    And live each day as if it were the last.

 

Albert Besnard, Dans la foule (1900)