Like so many before me, during the twilight of my years my belly has expanded dramatically, even as I've lost so much of that which once gave me structure and strength. My frail skin has turned a fierce and blotchy red, with innumerable breakouts and occasional massive flareups. I'm no longer the bright light of the party which not so long ago I used to be, nor do my most intimate lifelong companions find me to be anywhere near as scorchingly hot as I was in my prime. Several of them, in fact, have already abandoned me.
With advanced age, even basic control over the simplest of bodily functions has been compromised. Lately, for example, I've begun uncontrollably passing gas: rather copious amounts, I'm afraid. And my coughing jags, once intermittent, have become deeper and far more frequent; in fact, a given spasm can last for hours or even days, to the point where I'm left hacking up nothing but fumes.
Nor, unfortunately, is there any known cure for my affliction. I'm on oxygen right now, and have been for some time; but eventually, inevitably, even that will no longer be enough.
Everything in the universe enjoys a finite lifespan, and my own is quickly drawing to a close. I've accepted this basic fact; there's neither point nor purpose in raging against the dying of the light. An excess of iron has been accumulating within my aging core; the condition is always fatal, and there exists no safe recourse for transplanting or bleeding any of it away.
But those who have been following my case have given me reason to expect that the actual moment of my demise, when it comes, shall be like an immense beacon echoing across the void. My time-worn heart, overwhelmed, will at last implode; I'll give a single violent shudder and finally collapse, my dying breath blasting through this mortal coil to release my blazing soul into the Great Beyond.
What remains will be a shrunken and desiccated corpse, hemorrhaging what's left of its bodily warmth upon a sparse and frozen wasteland, with only the distant company of my oldest children for companionship during the unending night. A cold comfort, indeed; enough to leave me spinning in my grave, perhaps for all eternity.
However, at least I can take solace that from the throes of my death, others nearby may find fresh inspiration and purpose: new life, both in their creation and through their eventual evolution. Like the outstretched hand from which I've taken my name, I shall seed the universe with my progeny, my very essence; and as a Simurgh among swans, be immortalized forever thereby.
And what is my name, you ask?