We say, "That's the cold hard truth." It means "That's a truth I don't like. That's part of reality I'd rather put aside." As an elderly lady I know once told her daughter, memorably, "Well, that might be reality, but that doesn't mean I have to think about it."
You don't have to believe that, barring accident, you yourself are aging, and are going to die, and therefore make out an Advance Care Directive. Here's one form.
(This used to be called Living Will, a term that was somehow more approachable, though not logical. It's a record of how you want to be cared for in the event you can't speak for yourself.)Whether or not you face reality, it just is. To call it cold and harsh is to say you don't like it. Of course not in specific instances. But to dislike the laws of the universe is . . . not Zen.
I just brought this up because someone I know is going around telling friends how she wants them to pull the plug if she's terminally ill, and how to do her funeral (perhaps just keeping her end up in conversation) and you know what? her distant family is going to get to make all those decisions unless she gets it on paper. Signed and witnessed.
Gerard Manley Hopkins
I just returned to "The Windhover." It may be his best poem, and that's saying something, because he may be the best poet of his time.
In reading it, do not overlook the epigraph. Also, this: "my heart in hiding/stirred." My heart in hiding; what a phrase.
Here it is. It is his invented language, so, like contemporary art, it's not something you grasp on sight.
Just experience it.