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I have been asked to read something at my beloved Nans funeral.. any suggestions?

(16 Posts)
cookiemonstress Thu 29-Jan-09 10:31:01

My nan died this week and my Dad has asked me to read something at her funeral. I'm thinking of a piece of (non-religious - spiritual ok) text or poetry that I can dedicate to her on behalf of all her grandchildren.

Best wishes to everyone on this thread as am guessing you are here because you are close grief/death in some way.

MaryAnnSingleton Thu 29-Jan-09 10:41:51

very sorry for the sad loss of your nan cookie sad - am sure someone will find a nice reading for you - I'd offer the one read at my FILs funeral but it's a man one - it was lovely though and summed him up perfectly.

MaryAnnSingleton Thu 29-Jan-09 10:43:30

She Is Gone (He Is Gone)

You can shed tears that she is gone
Or you can smile because she has lived
You can close your eyes and pray that she will come back
Or you can open your eyes and see all that she has left
Your heart can be empty because you can't see her
Or you can be full of the love that you shared
You can turn your back on tomorrow and live yesterday
Or you can be happy for tomorrow because of yesterday
You can remember her and only that she is gone
Or you can cherish her memory and let it live on
You can cry and close your mind, be empty and turn your back
Or you can do what she would want: smile, open your eyes, love and go on.
David Harkins

Bink Thu 29-Jan-09 10:46:10

Did she have anything she particularly liked? My granny loved Thomas Hood, so I read this for her:

I remember, I remember
The house where I was born,
The little window where the sun
Came peeping in at morn;
He never came a wink too soon
Nor brought too long a day;
But now, I often wish the night
Had borne my breath away.

I remember, I remember
The roses red and white,
The violets and the lily cups--
Those flowers made of light!
The lilacs where the robin built,
And where my brother set
The laburnum on his birthday,--
The tree is living yet!

I remember, I remember
Where I was used to swing,
And thought the air must rush as fresh
To swallows on the wing;
My spirit flew in feathers then
That is so heavy now,
The summer pools could hardly cool
The fever on my brow.

I remember, I remember
The fir-trees dark and high;
I used to think their slender tops
Were close against the sky:
It was a childish ignorance,
But now 'tis little joy
To know I'm farther off from Heaven
Than when I was a boy.

It isn't anything consciously about death, or her (the "boy" bit obviously wouldn't work if you wanted it to be 'relevant') but it just expressed the kind of thing she loved, and her way of looking at life.

She also loved Edward Thomas's Adlestrop:

Yes, I remember Adlestrop --
The name, because one afternoon
Of heat the express-train drew up there
Unwontedly. It was late June.

The steam hissed. Someone cleared his throat.
No one left and no one came
On the bare platform. What I saw
Was Adlestrop -- only the name

And willows, willow-herb, and grass,
And meadowsweet, and haycocks dry,
No whit less still and lonely fair
Than the high cloudlets in the sky.

And for that minute a blackbird sang
Close by, and round him, mistier,
Farther and farther, all the birds
Of Oxfordshire and Gloucestershire.

Almeida Thu 29-Jan-09 10:46:24

Could you say how your nan was special to all her grandchildren. Some words about something relating to each child.

Sorry for your loss

Lotster Thu 29-Jan-09 10:46:27

Sorry for your loss Cookie.

There is a lovely reading I once did for a friend's mum. People did say afterwards that it touched them and was comforting. Hopefully it can help you too.

“I am standing upon 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.
I stand and watch her until at length
she hangs like a speck of white cloud
just where the sea and sky come
to mingle with each other.

Then, someone at my side says;
"There, she is gone!"

"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 she is just as able to bear her
load of living freight to her destined port.
Her diminished size is in me, not in her.

And just at the moment when someone
at my side says, "There, she is gone!"
There are other eyes watching her coming,
and other voices ready to take up the glad
shout;
"Here she comes!"
And that is dying.”

Henry Van Dyke

Bink Thu 29-Jan-09 10:47:57

PS - I guess the message of the Thomas Hood one, for my granny, was sort of "she's home again now"

steamedtreaclesponge Thu 29-Jan-09 10:48:37

I love Mary Elizabeth Frye's poem 'Do not stand at my grave and weep'

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.

Portofino Thu 29-Jan-09 10:53:17

I'm crying now!

Tillyscoutsmum Thu 29-Jan-09 11:19:02

Death is nothing at all
I have only slipped away into the next room
I am I and you are you
whatever we were to each other that we still are call me by my old familiar name
speak to me in the easy way which you always used
put no difference in your tone wear no forced air of solemnity or sorrow laugh as we always laughed at the little jokes we enjoyed together
pray smile, think of me, pray for me
Let my name be ever the household word that it always was Let it be spoken without effort without the trace of a shadow in it
Life means all that it ever meant it is the same as it ever was there is unbroken continuity why should I be out of mind because I am out of sight?
I am waiting for you somewhere very near just around the corner
All is well

I give you this one thought to keep - I am with you still - 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 think of me as gone - I am with you still - in each new dawn

Sorry for your loss Cookie sad

cookiemonstress Thu 29-Jan-09 12:49:49

Thank you everyone. I'm at work, nearly in tears at my desk. What lovely poems. I love them all.. ! Now I just have to choose.
Thanks again..
x

evansmummy Thu 29-Jan-09 18:39:33

I'd second Lotsters choice. I read that at my brother's funeral last year and people said the same thing to me, thought-provoking and reassuring, without being overtly 'religious'.

I'm sorry about your nan xxxxxx

MaryAnnSingleton Thu 29-Jan-09 18:53:39

agree with that one too - it's lovely

cupofteaplease Thu 29-Jan-09 19:04:55

I'm sorry for your loss sad

I read this poem at my Dad's funeral, it's beautiful IMO:

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

Miss me a little, but not for 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 a part of the Master's Plan
A step on the road to home.

When you are lonely and sick of heart
Go to the friends we know,
And bury your sorrows in doing
Good deeds,
Miss me, but let me go.

lottiejenkins Thu 29-Jan-09 21:32:40

This is the one im intending to have at my funeral.

IF I SHOULD GO BEFORE THE REST OF YOU
BREAK NOT A FLOWER NOR INSCRIBE A STONE
NOR WHEN IM GONE SPEAK IN A SUNDAY VOICE
BUT BE THE USUAL SELVES THAT I HAVE KNOWN
WEEP IF YOU MUST, PARTING IS HELL
BUT LIFE GOES ON, SO SING AS WELL.

JOYCE GRENFELL.

MaryAnnSingleton Fri 30-Jan-09 09:20:22

I love that Joyce Grenfell one !!

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