I don’t know upon what tales children are raised anymore, and I know that I had a my fair share of contemporary children’s stories and picture books to make me feel okay about life. The ones that I recall most clearly are the classics, the ones that are a little spooky. Perhaps that’s why I’ve always gravitated toward such folk tales, always torn between wanting to be on a beach, or wanting to be in the Black Forest in some little watchmaking village.
Anyway, by line three, you’re already caught up in the drama. The guy’s in a conversation with God. And then Satan. And then Death. At the end of the day, you know what’s going to happen: the man is going to defy Death because he’s too prideful. And then he’ll die. The moral: don’t be prideful? The other moral: Death truly is the one you can’t hold anything against–it’s the others you have to worry about.