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readings at funeral

(12 Posts)
metmoo Thu 03-Jul-08 00:45:09

in the sad moment of losing someone you love dearly its heartbreaking i know but the funeral is a tribute to your loved one and sometimes it is hard to find appropriate readings that mean something about the person you have lost. i lost my dear dad last year after a fire and found words to describe him in a reading very difficult. so i thought in tribute to all who have loved and lost to put readings they found comforting on here best wishes to all

When I quit this mortal shore
And mosey 'round this earth no more,
Do not weep and do not sob;
I may have found a better job.
Don't go and buy a large bouquet
For which you'll find it hard to pay,
Don't mope around and feel all blue;
I may be better off than you.
Don't tell the folks I was a saint
Or any old thing that I ain't.
If you have jam like that to spread,
Please hand it out before I'm dead.
If you have roses bless your soul,
Just pin one in my buttonhole
While I'm alive and well today;
Don't wait until I'm gone away.

The Dash
I read of a man who stood to speak
at the funeral of his friend.
He referred to the dates on her tombstone
from the the end.

He noted that first came the date of her birth
and spoke of the second with tears,
but he said that what mattered most of all
was the dash between those years.

For that dash represents all the time
that she spent alive on earth,
and now only those who loved her
know what that little line is worth.

For it matters not, how much we own;
the cars, the house, the cash.
What matters is how we live and love
and how we spend our dash.

So think about this long and hard,
are there things you'd like to change?
For you never know how much time is left.
(You could be at "dash mid-range.")

If we could just slow down enough
to considerwhat's true and real,
and always try to understand
the way other people feel. less quick to anger,
and show appreciation more
and love the people in our lives
like we've never loved before.

If we treat each other with respect,
and more often wear a smile,
remembering that this special dash
might only last a little while.

So, when your eulogy is being read
with your life's actions to rehash...
would you be pleased with the things they have to say
about how you spent your dash?

evansmummy Thu 03-Jul-08 08:02:53

I read the following poem at my brother's funeral a few weeks ago. Many people commented on how beautiful it is, and it's relatively unknown.

Parable of Immortality (A ship leaves…)

by Rev Henry Van Dyke (1852-1933)

I am standing by the seashore.
A ship at my side spreads her white sails to the morning breeze
and starts for the blue ocean.
She is an object of beauty and strength,
and I stand and watch
until at last she hangs like a peck of white cloud
just where the sun and sky come down to mingle with each other.

Then someone at my side says, ‘There she goes!’
Gone where? Gone from my sight - that is all.

She is just as large in mast and hull and spar
as she was when she left my side
and just as able to bear her load of living freight
to the places of destination.
Her diminished size is in me not in her.

And just at the moment when someone at my side says,
‘There she goes!’,
there are other eyes watching her coming,
and other voices ready to take up the glad shout:
‘Here she comes!’

Tommy Thu 03-Jul-08 08:05:19

I love that one evansmummy.

There have been lots of threads about readings like this. If you did a search you would find many lovely pieces smile

ivykaty44 Thu 03-Jul-08 08:07:19

An old man, going a lone highway,
Came at the evening, cold and gray,
To a chasm, vast and deep and wide,
Through which was flowing a sullen tide.
The old man crossed in the twilight dim;
The sullen stream had no fears for him;
But he turned when safe on the other side
And built a bridge to span the tide.

"Old man," said a fellow pilgrim near,
"You are wasting strength with building here;
Your journey will end with the ending day;
You never again must pass this way;
You have crossed the chasm, deep and wide—
Why build you the bridge at the eventide?"

The builder lifted his old gray head:
"Good friend, in the path I have come," he said,
"There followeth after me today
A youth whose feet must pass this way.
This chasm that has been naught to me
To that fair-haired youth may a pitfall be.
He, too, must cross in the twilight dim;
Good friend, I am building the bridge for him."

I read this at my grandfather funeral, thought provoking as my grandfather was alwasy for the youth following behind

Thelighthousekeeper Thu 03-Jul-08 23:50:28

We read the following poem at my baby boys funeral recently. I came across it on the interent, I don't know who wrote it but it seemed so appropriate.

God sent an angel to the earth...
The sweetest angel too
and for such a tiny little thing,
he had so much to do.
He knew he did not have
much time upon this earth to stay,
so he did not waste a second;
he got started right away.

His eyes were bright and sparkly,
he took in every turn.
He did not miss a single thing,
because Noah came to learn!
God sent him here to touch the
hearts of those he could not reach...
He taught them courage, strength and faith,
because Noah came to teach.

His tiny little body
was so full of God above,
you felt it when you held him,
because Noah came to love.

In ten short weeks he managed
what many never will.
When he went home to Jesus,
his purpose was fulfilled.
He learned and taught, loved and played,
he learned his lessons well.
I know God was so proud of him
when he went home to dwell.

But when I miss him OH-SO-MUCH,
I can almost hear God say,
please understand, his work was done...
Noah did not come to stay.

onlytheone Fri 04-Jul-08 00:36:25

What a great thread. It is so a real job finding appropriate readings that actually reflect the person you have lost. I had this one read at my DH's funeral:
Not how did he die, but how did he live?
Not what did he gain, but what did he give?
Of a man as a man, regardless of birth.
Not what was his church nor what was his creed,
But had he befriended those really in need?
Was he ever ready with a word of good cheer.
To bring back a smile, to banish a tear?
Not what did the sketch in the newspaper say,
But how mamy were sorry when he passed away?

Evenstar Fri 18-Jul-08 22:33:02

I had this read at DH's funeral:

For What Is It To Die - Khalil Gibran

For what is it to die but to stand naked in the wind and to melt into the sun?
And what is it to cease breathing,
but to free the breath from its restless tides,
that it may rise and expand and seek God unencumbered?
Only when you drink from the river of silence shall you indeed sing.
And when you reach the mountain top, then you shall begin to climb.
And when the earth shall claim your limbs, then shall you truly dance.

choufleur Wed 23-Jul-08 19:47:28

This one was at my cousin's funeral

Remember, christina rossetti

Remeber me when I am gone away,
Gone far away into the silent land;
When you can no more hold me by the hand,
Nor I half turn to go, yet turning stay.
Remember me when you no more day by day
You tell me of our future that you planned:
Only remember me; you understand
It will be late to counsel then or pray.

Yet if you should forget me for a while
And aftwerwards remember, do not grieve:
For if the darkness and corruption leave
A vestige of the thought that once I had,
Better by far you should forget and smile
Than that you should be remember and be sad.

shabster Wed 23-Jul-08 19:54:38

metmoo - both your poems are fantastic.

Lighthouse - sad you made me do the snotty cry again! What fitting words - truly lovely xxx

minster Wed 23-Jul-08 20:42:45

We're having Dirge Without Music,

I am not resigned to the shutting away of loving hearts in the hard ground.
So it is, and so it will be, for so it has been, time out of mind:
Into the darkness they go, the wise and the lovely. Crowned
With lilies and with laurel they go; but I am not resigned.

Lovers and thinkers, into the earth with you.
Be one with the dull, the indiscriminate dust.
A fragment of what you felt, of what you knew,
A formula, a phrase remains, --- but the best is lost.

The answers quick & keen, the honest look, the laughter, the love,
They are gone. They have gone to feed the roses. Elegant and curled
Is the blossom. Fragrant is the blossom. I know. But I do not approve.
More precious was the light in your eyes than all the roses in the world.

Down, down, down into the darkness of the grave
Gently they go, the beautiful, the tender, the kind;
Quietly they go, the intelligent, the witty, the brave.
I know. But I do not approve. And I am not resigned.

Nothing Gold can Stay,

Nature's first green is gold,
Her hardest hue to hold.
Her early leaf's a flower;
But only so an hour.
Then leaf subsides to leaf.
So Eden sank to grief,
So dawn goes down to day.
Nothing gold can stay.

and Sweet & Low,

Sweet and low, sweet and low,
Wind of the western sea,
Low, low, breathe and blow,
Wind of the western sea!
Over the rolling waters go,
Come from the dying moon, and blow,
Blow him again to me;
While my little one, while my pretty one, sleeps.

Sleep and rest, sleep and rest,
Father will come to thee soon;
Rest, rest, on mother's breast,
Father will come to thee soon;
Father will come to his babe in the nest,
Silver sails all out of the west
Under the silver moon:
Sleep, my little one, sleep, my pretty one, sleep.

at my son's funeral next Wednesday.

TheRedQueen Wed 23-Jul-08 20:58:28

This was read at my grandma's funeral last September, author unknown:

Do not stand at my grave and weep;
I am not there. I do not sleep.
I am a thousand winds that blow.
I am the diamond glints on snow.
I am the sunlight on ripened grain.
I am the gentle autumn rain.
When you awaken in the morning's hush
I am the swift uplifting rush
Of quiet birds in circled flight.
I am the soft stars that shine at night.
Do not stand at my grave and cry;
I am not there. I did not die.

bigcar Thu 24-Jul-08 12:31:55

A friend gave me this when my mum passed away.

When I come to the end of the road
And the sun has set for me
I want no rites in a gloom filled room
Why cry for a soul set free!

Miss me a little - but not too long
And not with your head bowed low
Remember the love we once shared
Miss me - But let me go!

For this is a journey we all must take
And each must go alone
It's all part of the master plan
A step on the road to home

When you are lonely and sick at heart
Go to the friends we know
And bury your sorrows in doing good deeds
Miss me - But let me go!

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