Death – the hunter, is out with his hound to kill ruthlessly and recklessly anyone and everyone that meets him on the way. This inexorable enemy of man cuts short many lives full of promise in their prime and takes them away before they have so much as seen the least of life. Many and varied are the ghastly ways of his killing. An overwhelming large number of his victims die a mercilessly, lingering and excruciating death.
With noiseless footfall comes death. He comes on the tiptoe and the chill of death takes possession of his victim. The pallor of death falls on his face. The dazed victim stares with vacant eyes. The eyes that shone light lose luster. They sink deep into their sockets. Light fails and vision is blurred. The eyelids droop. The senses flee and wits grow dim and the memory fails. The brain is benumbed and reason is eclipsed. Limbs grow stiff. The body begins to stiffen in final contraction. A rattling sound comes from the throat. The patient passes into a coma. He does not come out of the delirium and happily therefore, he knows not that he is suffering. The blood in his veins dries up. The breath of life begins to ebb from the veins. The last convulsion of the body gripped in the agony of dissolution begins, breath comes in great gasps, the pulse ceases to beat, the heart stands still, bodily mechanism ceases to function and falls to pieces.
Nothing can bring back warmth into his body. The light will not come back to his eyes, the pulse will not begin anew to throb and the heart will not resume beating. None will now breathe the breath of life back into his body. He is now a lifeless lump of clay. He is dead and the dead is dust.
When weakness grows upon me and age is slowly creeping over me, when I begin to fail in health, when the decay of my physical powers creeps over me, when life is ebbing and the beginning of the end is in sight, let it not be prolonged and painful. Let merciful nature relieve me from suffering. Let not the dreaded shade of death hang darkening over me. Let me not long await the oncoming of death.
Life flickers out like the light of the candle that lightens my death-chamber. Let not the flickering light burn laboriously in gasping flames near extinction. Let my life be extinguished, as swiftly as a candle is blown out by the blast of a powerful wind.
Help me to die a death, my God, without agony and without pain. When I lie down to die, let it be with peace of death over my face. Let me sleep the sleep of my death and let me peacefully go to my lasting rest.