Giants are born into worlds of mere men-
often beginning their lives as such.
But at death they leave a void that is
impossible to fill, and their unfinished
journey too long and winding
for their more ordinary successors and contemporaries,
always tethered to mortality
and lives prosaic.
They have endured loss after loss
and defeat after crushing defeat,
but have continued their far-reaching
only growing stronger, and closer
to transcending this mortal coil.
Their creations alone
do their tales and legacy justice:
magnificent, enigmatic things
born of tragedy and chaos;
a testament to their mystery
and that of man.
Always with their heads to the sky
and their gazes fixed on the horizon,
they become exiles-
by their own doing and accord,
and by the stagnant, languid
masses who only aspire to mediocrity.
All who have stood in their shadows
need not fear being tread upon
or reduced to insignificance,
but should take it upon themselves
to follow in their paths,
and be proud to have stood
so close to these immortal monoliths.
But those who never felt the shade in their lives
need not fret nor lament:
for though the body dies,
legends neither die nor vanish.
Happy birthday, Ludwig van Beethoven.