for Ray Kurzweil
Although some claim the Singularity
(barring a catastrophic accident)
will let us live on Earth indefinitely,
is immortality a good intent?
I think we need the goad of finitude
to let us savor life’s precarious joys,
which with more urgent relish are pursued
when scarce, whereas a surfeit of them cloys.
Without the ever-lurking specter Death
and the dread prospect of oblivion,
we’d have no prompt to savor every breath
as when we know our lives may soon be done.
Though it seems paradoxical, we owe
our joy in life to knowing we must go.