Since I've been down in Devon, my main occupation has been to teach English to foreigners (from 9 till 12 daily). It's a nice kind of job, with afternoons free for recovering.
Anyway, so this morning I had chosen to do a thoughtful little lesson on poignant poetry: Stop All The Clocks [WH Auden] and Danny Boy. Having dealt with the huge emptiness and desolation of the first one (also known as Funeral Blues) I asked what sort of contrast the class could see or feel in the song. One of the German boys – not a particularly confident guy in general, about 15 - put up his hand and said:
Death is not the enemy.
That was it. Fantastic stuff really. When I asked him to explain, he talked about the writer of Danny Boy obviously believing in God (a good observation), and how that changes the attitude to dying. I was so impressed – well done him.