Archive for November, 2008

‘BYE MAMA

22 November 2008

It was mama’s funeral this morning.  At least it was dry; I hate rainy funerals — there’s too much slippery mud for a start, but the wet and grey just makes the whole thing such an ordeal. For mama, it was dry, but freezing cold Arctic winds from the north chilled us all to the core.  There were a few scattered flakes of snow, but nothing came of it.

It’s a lovely graveyard, as graveyards go.  Small, and rural — and pretty old, pastoral is the right word for it.  Hardly anyone seems to know about it. I picked it for my Dad’s plot some 20 years ago, I knew of it because a friend of mine’s Dad is buried there.

It was strange this morning, being back at my father’s grave.  It was big enough for dad, mama and me because my sister was married with kids when our dad died, and it seemed unlikely that I would bother to get married!  Being there this morning made me realise that I’d better come up with a new plan now that I am married with kids; there’s no way I’m being buried with my parents now.

The kids were really well behaved, and everyone was so nice and the minister’s words were really touching, especially this poem:

Do not stand at my grave and weep,
I am not there, I do not sleep.

I am in a thousand winds that blow,
I am the softly falling snow.

I am the gentle showers of rain,
I am the fields of ripening grain.

I am in the morning hush,
I am in the graceful rush
Of beautiful birds in circling flight,
I am the starshine of the night.

I am in the flowers that bloom,
I am in a quiet room.

I am in the birds that sing,
I am in each lovely thing.

Do not stand at my grave and cry,
I am not there. I do not die.

It struck me as really lovely, and I remembered so much of it that after the food, when we got home, I searched the internet and found out that it was by Mary Elizabeth Frye (1905-2004).

Funny how the religious stuff didn’t “take” as well as this wee poem! Anyway, it was a beautiful and proper send-off. “Bye, bye mama”.

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