I am being gathered to my fathers, one withering sinew at a time:
drying, fading, stiffening, and twisting: the price of living long.
Thanatos’s clock is ticking down to its genetic prime.
The inner man, says St. Paul, is growing strong.
The shame of my vile flesh is manifest in decay.
Whence comes this inner man and whither does he go?
The sound of this dying jackass of a soma is a long bray.
The weight of the corruptible makes the incorruptible slow.
Who will deliver me from this body of death?
What good is an inner man I cannot see?
Paul, will I find my inner man when I take my last breath?
I cannot sugar-coat this dying: I am already on one knee.
— Karl Kalfaian
Karl Kalfaian is a 76-year-old man living in an assisted living center. He worked for 29 years as an employee of the Disability Insurance Service for the state of New Jersey. Prior to service with the state, he worked as a teacher and attended seminary.