Death – The End?

I bought the book “A Thousand Films To See Before You Die”,

I’ve got the “Thousand Restaurants” – it’s all pie in the sky…

Live life till it’s full to busting – that’s what I intend

What else can we do with it? – Death will be the end.


My neighbour’s got the perfect lawn, he’s out there every day

He clips and rolls and mows and rakes – to keep chaos at bay

And then he gets his strimmer out – Great Scott! the hours he’ll spend!

It’s only till he pops his clogs, ‘cos Death will be the end.


My brother, he’s a Gadget Man, has all the latest Stuff –

iPad, iPhone – I don’t know, it’s never quite enough.

“There always will be more,” I said,”I don’t mean to offend”

What else can I do?” he answered, “Death will be the end.”


And yet behind his flash facade, there beats a heart of gold,

If you’re in schtuck he’ll make sure you’re not left out in the cold.

The wisdom of your kindness brings its own reward my friend,

And maybe in some future life, if Death is not the end.”


It’s always been the present moment, since I first drew breath,

And yet my body falls apart as I approach my death;

If Now is what Awareness is, its future will extend

Without a break or limit… Hey! Death is not the end!


We prostrate, we meditate, we turn towards our strife –

It’s tough here at the Dharma coalface – is this any life?

We’re still not liberated – on what can we depend?

Make punya while you’re breathing – Death is not the end!

Alternative last line:
Make good karma, Baby! – Death is not the end!

© Five, November 2010, revised October 2018


1) ‘punya’ is a Sanskrit word, it is used in Hindi and some other Indian languages. It is deeply related with Indian life style and philosophy. Its meaning is very deep, broad and special. There is no equivalent single English word to convey its exact meaning.

English words related to punya –
Virtue – (The service of mankind is virtue.)
Good deed – (e.g. to plant trees,to donate, to speak truth, to provide education)
Charity – (The root of charity is very deep)
Holy – (He is a holy man)


2) Commentary on the penultimate verse here.

3) After hearing Nick Cave and friends sing the Bob Dylan song “Death is not the End” I had the hook line in my head, and thought it would make a Dharma song. Sometime later, I wrote these words, and put them to a standard blues tune.


Here’s the tune:

Death - the End melody