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Poems for a funeral

Click Here To View The Funeral Poems List

Poems for a funeral

This article aims to make finding the right poem for your loved ones funeral order of service a little easier. This is a list of 149 of the most popular poems for your loved one. You can use the quick navigation below to jump to the poem of most interest, or scroll through the list of the most popular poems for a funeral and choose the one that really speaks to you.

If you are using me to design and print your funeral order of service, just quote the number and title of the poem when you share your funeral service running order, I’ll save you the time of copying and pasting the information over again.

Many of these poems touch in a poignant way, loss, death and dealing with grief. You may wish to use some of these poems in your funeral readings too. I hope this guide makes the planning of the funeral a little easier.

The Top 30 Funeral Poems

1. How did they live?

by Anonymous

Not, how did they die, but how did they live?

Not, what did they gain, but what did they give?

These are the units to measure the worth

Of a person as a person, regardless of birth.

Not, what was their church, nor what was their creed?

But had they befriended those really in need?

Were they 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 many were sorry when they passed away?

2. Let me go

by Christina Rossetti

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 for long

And not with your head bowed low

Remember the love that once we 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.

Laugh at all the things we used to do

Miss me, but let me go.

3. Remember me

by Margaret Mead

To the living, I am gone, 

To the sorrowful, I will never return, 

To the angry, I was cheated, 

But to the happy, I am at peace,

And to the faithful, I have never left.

I cannot speak, but I can listen. 

I cannot be seen, but I can be heard. 

So as you stand upon a shore gazing at a beautiful sea, 

As you look upon a flower and admire its simplicity, 

Remember me.

Remember me in your heart: 

Your thoughts, and your memories, 

Of the times we loved, 

The times we cried, 

The times we fought, 

The times we laughed. 

For if you always think of me, I will never have gone.

4. He is gone (she is gone)

by David Harkins

You can shed tears that he is gone

Or you can smile because he has lived

You can close your eyes and pray that he will come back

Or you can open your eyes and see all that he has left

Your heart can be empty because you can’t see him

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 him and only that he is gone

Or you can cherish his memory and let it live on

You can cry and close your mind, be empty and turn your back

Or you can do what he would want: smile, open your eyes, love and go on.

5. Don’t cry for me

by Anonymous

Don’t cry for me now I have died, for I’m still here I’m by your side,

My body’s gone but my soul is here, please don’t shed another tear,

I am still here I’m all around, only my body lies in the ground.

I am the snowflake that kisses your nose,

I am the frost, that nips your toes.

I am the sun, bringing you light,

I am the star, shining so bright.

I am the rain, refreshing the earth,

I am the laughter, I am the mirth.

I am the bird, up in the sky,

I am the cloud, that’s drifting by.

I am the thoughts, inside your head,

While I’m still there, I can’t be dead.

 

6. Angel

by Anonymous

Tear drops, slow and steady, The pain so real and true,

God took another angel, And that angel, dear, was you.

Angel wings, upon the clouds, Your body softly sleeps,

Hush now little angel, No more tears you have to weep.

Little prayers are sent to you, The short life you led;

Your family will never forget you, So rest your little head.

I know God will look after you, Now you are truly alive,

Your spirit soars beyond the moon, Your legacy will survive.

You’re beautiful, you’re endless, Now stretch your wings and fly,

You’re loved by so many, It will never be goodbye.

Close your pretty eyes, No more tears, just go and rest,

Let your soul lie peacefully, We know you did your best.

7. Gone, but not forgotten (him or her)

by Ellen Brenneman

Don’t think of her/him as gone away

Her/His journey’s just begun,

Life holds so many facets

This earth is only one.

Just think of her/him as resting

From the sorrows and the tears

In a place of warmth and comfort

Where there are no days and years.

Think how she/he must be wishing

That we could know today

How nothing but our sadness

Can really pass away.

And think of her/him as living

In the hearts of those she/he touched

For nothing loved is ever lost

And she/he was loved so much.

8. Come with me

by Rhonda Braswell

God saw you getting tired

And a cure was not to be

So He put His arms around you

And whispered ‘Come with Me.’

With tearful eyes

We watched you suffer

And saw you fade away,

Although we loved you dearly

We could not make you stay.

A golden heart stopped beating,

Hard working hands at rest,

God broke our hearts to prove

He only takes the best.

It’s lonesome here without you,

We miss you more each day,

Life doesn’t seem the same

Since you’ve gone away.

When days are sad and lonely

And everything goes wrong,

We seem to hear you whisper

‘Cheer up and carry on.’

Each time we see your picture,

You seem to smile and say

‘Don’t cry, I’m in God’s keeping

We’ll meet again someday.’

You never said ‘I’m leaving’,

You never said goodbye,

You were gone before we knew it,

And only God knew why.

A million times we needed you,

A million times we cried,

If love alone could have saved you,

You never would have died.

In life we loved you dearly,

In death we love you still ,

In our hearts you hold a place,

That no one could ever fill.

It broke our hearts to lose you,

But you didn’t go alone,

For part of us went with you,

The day God took you home.

9. A song of living

by Amelia Josephine Burr

Because I have loved life, I shall have no sorrow to die.

I have sent up my gladness on wings, to be lost in the blue of the sky.

I have run and leaped with the rain,

I have taken the wind to my breast.

My cheek like a drowsy child

to the face of the earth I have pressed.

Because I have loved life,

I shall have no sorrow to die.

10. The Star

by Anonymous

A light went out on Earth for me

The day we said goodbye

And on that day a star was born,

The brightest in the sky

Reaching through the darkness

With its rays of purest white

Lighting up the Heavens

As it once lit up my life

With beams of love to heal

The broken heart you left behind

Where always in my memory

Your lovely star will shine

11. Because I loved you so

by Anonymous

Time will not dim the face I love,

The voice I heard each day,

The many things you did for me,

In your own special way.

All my life I’ll miss you,

As the years come and go,

But in my heart I’ll keep you,

Because I love you so.

12. Don’t stand at my grave and weep

by Mary Frye

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’s 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.

13. If I should go tomorrow

by Anonymous

If I should go tomorrow

It would never be goodbye,

For I have left my heart with you,

So don’t you ever cry.

The love that’s deep within me,

Shall reach you from the stars,

You’ll feel it from the heavens,

And it will heal the scars.

14. I’m there inside your heart

by Anonymous

Right now I’m in a different place

And though we seem apart

I’m closer than I ever was,

I’m there inside your heart.

I’m with you when you greet each day

And while the sun shines bright

I’m there to share the sunsets, too

I’m with you every night.

I’m with you when the times are good

To share a laugh or two,

And if a tear should start to fall

I’ll still be there for you.

And when that day arrives

That we no longer are apart,

I’ll smile and hold you close to me,

Forever in my heart.

15. To those whom I love and those whom love me

by Anonymous

When I am gone, release me, let me go.

I have so many things to see and do,

You mustn’t tie yourself to me with too many tears,

But be thankful we had so many good years.

I gave you my love, and you can only guess

How much you’ve given me in happiness.

I thank you for the love that you have shown,

But now it is time I travelled on alone.

So grieve for me a while, if grieve you must,

Then let your grief be comforted by trust.

It is only for a while that we must part,

So treasure the memories within your heart.

I won’t be far away for life goes on.

And if you need me, call and I will come.

Though you can’t see or touch me, I will be near.

And if you listen with your heart, you’ll hear,

All my love around you soft and clear.

And then, when you come this way alone,

I’ll greet you with a smile and a ‘Welcome Home’.

 

16. Funeral Blues

by W. H. Auden

Let airplanes circle moaning overhead

Scribbling on the sky the message “He is Dead”,

Put Crepe bows round the white necks of the public doves,

Let the traffic policemen wear black cotton gloves.

He was my North, my South, my East and West,

My working week and my Sunday-rest,

My noon, my midnight, my talk , my song;

I thought that love would last forever: I was wrong

The stars are not wanted now: put out every one;

Pack up the moon and dismantle the sun;

Pour away the ocean and sweep up the wood,

For nothing now can ever come to any good

17. One at rest

by anonymous

Think of me as one at rest,

for me you should not weep

I have no pain no troubled thoughts

for I am just asleep

The living thinking me that was,

is now forever still

And life goes on without me now,

as time forever will.

If your heart is heavy now

because I’ve gone away

Dwell not long upon it friend

For none of us can stay

Those of you who liked me,

I sincerely thank you all

And those of you who loved me,

I thank you most of all.

And in my fleeting lifespan,

as time went rushing by

I found some time to hesitate,

to laugh, to love, to cry

Matters it now if time began

If time will ever cease?

I was here, I used it all,

and now I am at peace.

Upbeat poems that can lift the spirits and mood of a service.

 

18. Pardon me for not getting up

by Anonymous

Oh dear, if you’re reading this right now,

I must have given up the ghost.

I hope you can forgive me for being

Such a stiff and unwelcoming host.

Just talk amongst yourself my friends,

And share a toast or two.

For I am sure you will remember well

How I loved to drink with you.

Don’t worry about mourning me,

I was never easy to offend.

Feel free to share a story at my expense

And we’ll have a good laugh at the end.

19. I am free

by Shannon Lee Moseley

Don’t grieve for me, for now I’m free,

I’m following the path God laid for me.

I took His hand when I heard Him call,

I turned my back and left it all.

I could not stay another day, to laugh,

To love, to work or play.

Tasks undone must stay that way

I’ve found that peace at the close of the day.

If parting has left a void,

Then fill it with remembered joy.

A friendship shared, a laugh, a kiss,

Ah, yes, these things I too will miss.

Be not burdened with times of sorrow

I wish for you the sunshine of tomorrow.

My life’s been full, I savoured much

Good friends, good times, a loved one’s touch.

Perhaps my time seemed all too brief,

Don’t lengthen it now with undue grief.

Lift up your hearts and share with me,

God wants me now, He set me free.

20. All is well (Death is nothing)

by Henry Scott Holland

Death is nothing at all,

I have only slipped into the next room

I am I and you are you

Whatever we were to each other, that we are still.

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.

Play, smile, think of me, pray for me.

Let my name be ever the household word that it always was,

Let it be spoken without effect, without the trace of shadow on 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, for an interval, somewhere very near,

Just around the corner.

All is well.

21. Afterglow

by Anonymous

I’d like the memory of me to be a happy one.

I’d like to leave an afterglow of smiles when life is done.

I’d like to leave an echo whispering softly down the ways,

Of happy times and laughing times and bright and sunny days.

I’d like the tears of those who grieve, to dry before the sun;

Of happy memories that I leave when life is done.

If you are a little short on space in the funeral order of service, and need funeral poems that are a little lighter on the word count, look no further than the following list

22. The Star

By Anonymous

A light went out on Earth for me

The day we said goodbye

And on that day a star was born,

The brightest in the sky

Reaching through the darkness

With its rays of purest white

Lighting up the Heavens

As it once lit up my life

With beams of love to heal

The broken heart you left behind

Where always in my memory

Your lovely star will shine

23. Because I love you so

by Anonymous

Time will not dim the face I love,

The voice I heard each day,

The many things you did for me,

In your own special way.

All my life I’ll miss you,

As the years come and go,

But in my heart I’ll keep you,

Because I love you so.

24. If I should go tomorrow

by Anonymous

If I should go tomorrow

It would never be goodbye,

For I have left my heart with you,

So don’t you ever cry.

The love that’s deep within me,

Shall reach you from the stars,

You’ll feel it from the heavens,

And it will heal the scars.

25. A song of living

by Amelia Josephine Burr

Because I have loved life, I shall have no sorrow to die.

I have sent up my gladness on wings, to be lost in the blue of the sky.

I have run and leaped with the rain,

I have taken the wind to my breast.

My cheek like a drowsy child

to the face of the earth I have pressed.

Because I have loved life,

I shall have no sorrow to die.

Miscellaneous funeral poems, a collection of all manner of funeral poetry which you might find the perfect fit for your funeral order of service.

26. One at rest

by Anonymous

Think of me as one at rest,

for me you should not weep

I have no pain no troubled thoughts

for I am just asleep

The living thinking me that was,

is now forever still

And life goes on without me now,

as time forever will.

If your heart is heavy now

because I’ve gone away

Dwell not long upon it friend

For none of us can stay

Those of you who liked me,

I sincerely thank you all

And those of you who loved me,

I thank you most of all.

And in my fleeting lifespan,

as time went rushing by

I found some time to hesitate,

to laugh, to love, to cry

Matters it now if time began

If time will ever cease?

I was here, I used it all,

and now I am at peace.

27. Funeral blues

by W. H. Auden

Stop all the clocks, cut off the telephone,

Prevent the dog from barking with a juicy bone,

Silence the pianos and with muffled drum

Bring out the coffin, let the mourners come.

Let airplanes circle moaning overhead

Scribbling on the sky the message “He is Dead”,

Put Crepe bows round the white necks of the public doves,

Let the traffic policemen wear black cotton gloves.

He was my North, my South, my East and West,

My working week and my Sunday-rest,

My noon, my midnight, my talk , my song;

I thought that love would last forever: I was wrong

The stars are not wanted now: put out every one;

Pack up the moon and dismantle the sun;

Pour away the ocean and sweep up the wood,

For nothing now can ever come to any good

28. I’m there inside your heart

by Anonymous

Right now I’m in a different place

And though we seem apart

I’m closer than I ever was,

I’m there inside your heart.

I’m with you when you greet each day

And while the sun shines bright

I’m there to share the sunsets, too

I’m with you every night.

I’m with you when the times are good

To share a laugh or two,

And if a tear should start to fall

I’ll still be there for you.

And when that day arrives

That we no longer are apart,

I’ll smile and hold you close to me,

Forever in my heart.

29. To those whom I love & those who love me

by Anonymous

When I am gone, release me, let me go.

I have so many things to see and do,

You mustn’t tie yourself to me with too many tears,

But be thankful we had so many good years.

I gave you my love, and you can only guess

How much you’ve given me in happiness.

I thank you for the love that you have shown,

But now it is time I travelled on alone.

So grieve for me a while, if grieve you must,

Then let your grief be comforted by trust.

It is only for a while that we must part,

So treasure the memories within your heart.

I won’t be far away for life goes on.

And if you need me, call and I will come.

Though you can’t see or touch me, I will be near.

And if you listen with your heart, you’ll hear,

All my love around you soft and clear.

And then, when you come this way alone,

I’ll greet you with a smile and a ‘Welcome Home’.

30. Little Gidding

by TS Elliot

We shall not cease from exploration

And the end of all our exploring

Will be to arrive where we started

And know the place for the first time.

Through the unknown, unremembered gate

When the last of earth left to discover

Is that which was the beginning;

At the source of the longest river

The voice of the hidden waterfall

And the children in the apple-tree

Not known, because not looked for

But heard, half-heard, in the stillness

Between two waves of the sea.

Quick now, here, now, always

A condition of complete simplicity

(Costing not less than everything)

And all shall be well and

All manner of thing shall be well

When the tongues of flame are in-folded

Into the crowned knot of fire

And the fire and the rose are one.

31. Come To Me When I’m Dying

by Anonymous

Come to me when I’m dying;

Gaze on my wasted form,

Tired with so long defying

Life’s ever-rushing storm.

Come, come when I am dying,

And stand beside my bed,

Ere yet my soul is flying,

And I am cold and dead.

Bend low and lower o’er me,

For I’ve a word to say

Though death is just before me,

Ere I can go away.

Now that my soul is hovering

Upon the verge of day,

For thee I’ll lift the covering

That veils its quivering ray. 

O, ne’er had I thus spoken

In health’s bright, rosy glow!

But death my pride hath broken,

And brought my spirit low.

Though now this last revealing

Quickens life’s curdling springs,

And a half-timid feeling

Faint flushes o’er me flings.

Bend lower yet above me,

For I would have thee know

How passing well I love thee,

And joy to tell thee so.

This love, so purely welling

Up in this heart of mine,

O, hath it e’er found dwelling

Within thy spirit’s shrine?

I’ve prayed my God, in meekness,

To give me some control

Over this earthly weakness

That so enthralled my soul;

And now my soul rejoices

While sweetly-thrilling strains,

From low, harmonious voices,

Soothe all my dying pains.

They sing of the Eternal,

Whose throne is far above,

Where zephyrs softly vernal

Float over bowers of love;

Of hopes and joys, earth-blighted,

Blooming ‘neath cloudless skies,

Of hearts and souls united

In love that never dies.

‘Tis there, ’tis there I’ll meet thee

When life’s brief day is o’er;

O, with what joy to greet thee

On that eternal shore!

Farewell! for death is chilling

My pulses swift and fast;

And yet in God I’m willing

This hour should be my last.

Sometimes, when day declineth,

And all the gorgeous west

In gold and purple shineth,

Go to my place of rest;

And if thy voice in weeping,

Is borne upon the air,

Think not of me as sleeping;

All cold and silent there:

But turn, with glances tender,

Toward a shining star,

Whose rays with chastened splendor

Fall on thee from afar.

And know the blissful dwelling

Where I am waiting thee,

When Jordan fiercely swelling

Shall set thy spirit free.

32. Do Not Weep For Me

by Anonymous

Do not weep for me for I have not gone.

I am the wind that shakes the mighty Oak.

I am the gentle rain that falls upon your face.

I am the spring flower that pushes through the dark earth.

I am the chuckling laughter of the mountain stream. 

Do not weep for me for I have not gone.

I am the memory that dwells in the heart of those that knew me.

I am the shadow that dances on the edge of your vision.

I am the wild goose that flies south at Autumns call and I shall return at Summer rising.

I am the stag on the wild hills way.

I am just around the corner.

Therefore, the wise weep not.

But rejoice at the transformation of my Being.

33. Crossing the Bar

by Alfred Tennyson

Sunset and evening star

And one clear call for me!

And may there be no moaning of the bar,

When I put out to sea,

But such a tide as moving seems asleep,

Too full for sound and foam,

When that which drew from out the boundless deep

Turns again home.

Twilight and evening bell,

And after that the dark!

And may there be no sadness of farewell,

When I embark;

For though from out our bourne of Time and Place

The flood may bear me far,

I hope to see my Pilot face to face

When I have crossed the bar.

34. If I Should Go Tomorrow

by Anonymous

If I should go tomorrow 

It would never be goodbye, 

For I have left my heart with you, 

So don’t you ever cry.

 

The love that’s deep within me, 

Shall reach you from the stars, 

You’ll feel it from the heavens, 

And it will heal the scars.

35. The Excursion (sample)

by William Wordsworth

And when the stream that overflows has passed,

A consciousness remains upon the silent shore of memory;

Images and precious thoughts that shall not be

And cannot be destroyed.

 

36. To Those Whom I Love & Those Who Love Me

by Anonymous

When I am gone, release me, let me go. 

I have so many things to see and do, 

You mustn’t tie yourself to me with too many tears, 

But be thankful we had so many good years.

I gave you my love, and you can only guess 

How much you’ve given me in happiness. 

I thank you for the love that you have shown, 

But now it is time I traveled on alone.

So grieve for me a while, if grieve you must, 

Then let your grief be comforted by trust. 

It is only for a while that we must part, 

So treasure the memories within your heart.

I won’t be far away for life goes on. 

And if you need me, call and I will come.

Though you can’t see or touch me, I will be near. 

And if you listen with your heart, you’ll hear, 

All my love around you soft and clear.

And then, when you come this way alone, 

I’ll greet you with a smile and a ‘Welcome Home’.

37. But Not Forgotten

by Dorothy Parker

I think, no matter where you stray,

That I shall go with you a way.

Though you may wander sweeter lands,

You will not soon forget my hands,

Nor yet the way I held my head,

Nor all the tremulous things I said.

You still will see me, small and white

And smiling, in the secret night,

And feel my arms about you when

The day comes fluttering back again.

I think, no matter where you be,

You’ll hold me in your memory

And keep my image, there without me,

By telling later loves about me.

38. On Pain

by Khali Gibran

our pain is the breaking of the shell

that encloses your understanding. 

Even as the stone of the fruit must break, that its

heart may stand in the sun, so must you know pain. 

And could you keep your heart in wonder

at the daily miracles of your life, your pain

would not seem less wondrous than your joy; 

And you would accept the seasons of your

heart, even as you have always accepted

the seasons that pass over your fields. 

And you would watch with serenity

through the winters of your grief. 

Much of your pain is self-chosen. 

It is the bitter potion by which the

physician within you heals your sick self. 

Therefore trust the physician, and drink

his remedy in silence and tranquility: 

For his hand, though heavy and hard, is guided

by the tender hand of the Unseen,

And the cup he brings, though it burn your lips,

has been fashioned of the clay which the Potter

has moistened with His own sacred tears.

39. Darest Thou Now O Soul

by Walt Witman

Darest thou now O soul,

Walk out with me toward the unknown region,

Where neither ground is for the feet nor any path to follow?

No map there, nor guide,

Nor voice sounding, nor touch of human hand,

Nor face with blooming flesh, nor lips, nor eyes, are in that land.

I know it not O soul,

Nor dost thou, all is a blank before us,

All waits undream‘d of in that region, that inaccessible land.

Till when the ties loosen,

All but the ties eternal, Time and Space,

Nor darkness, gravitation, sense, nor any bounds bounding us.

Then we burst forth, we float,

In Time and Space O soul, prepared for them,

Equal, equipt at last, (O joy! O fruit of all!) them to fulfil O soul

40. Child of Mine

by Edgar Albert Guest

I‘ll lend you for a little time a child of Mine, He said,

For you to love while he lives and mourn for when he‘s dead.

It may be six or seven years or twenty-two or three,

But will you, till I call him back, take care of him for Me?

He‘ll bring his charms to gladden you, and shall his stay be brief,

You‘ll have his lovely memories as solace for your grief.

I cannot promise he will stay, since all from Earth return,

But there are lessons taught down there I want this child to learn.

I‘ve looked the wide world over in my search for teachers true.

And from the throngs that crowd life‘s lanes, I have selected you.

Now will you give him all your love, not think the labour vain,

Nor hate Me when I come to call to take him back again? 

I fancied that I heard them say: ―Dear Lord, thy will be done!

For all the joy Thy child shall bring, the risk of grief we‘ll run.

We‘ll shelter him with tenderness, we‘ll love him while we may.

And for the happiness we‘ve known, forever grateful stay.

But shall the angels call for him much sooner than we‘ve planned,

We‘ll brave the bitter grief that comes and try to understand.

41. All Nature Has A Feeling

by John Clare

All nature has a feeling: woods, fields, brooks

Are life eternal: and in silence they

Speak happiness beyond the reach of books;

There’s nothing mortal in them; their decay

Is the green life of change; to pass away

And come again in blooms revivified.

Its birth was heaven, eternal it its stay,

And with the sun and moon shall still abide

Beneath their day and night and heaven wide.

42. The Tombs In Westminster Abbey

by F Beaumont

Mortality, behold and fear

What a change of flesh is here!

Think how many royal bones

Sleep within these heaps of stones;

Here they lie, had realms and lands,

Who now want strength to stir their hands,

Where from their pulpits seal’d with dust

They preach, “In greatness is no trust.”

Here’s an acre sown indeed

With the richest royallest seed

That the earth did e’er suck in

Since the first man died for sin:

Here the bones of birth have cried

“Though gods they were, as men they died!”

Here are sands, ignoble things,

Dropt from the ruin’d sides of kings

Here’s a world of pomp and state

Buried in dust, once dead by fate.

43. Remembrance

by William Shakespeare

When to the sessions of sweet silent thought

I summon up remembrance of things past,

I sigh the lack of many a thing I sought,

And with old woes new wail my dear time’s waste

Then can I drown an eye, unused to flow,

For precious friends hid in death’s dateless night,

And weep afresh love’s long-since-cancell’d woe,

And moan the expense of many a vanish’d sight.

Then can I grieve at grievances foregone,

And heavily from woe to woe tell o’er

The sad account of fore-bemoanéd moan,

Which I new pay as if not paid before:

–But if the while I think on thee, dear friend,

All losses are restored, and sorrows end.

44. Fidele

by William Shakespeare

Fear no more the heat o’ the sun,

Nor the furious winter’s rages:

Thou thy worldly task hast done,

Home art gone, and ta’en thy wages:

Golden lads and girls all must,

As chimney-sweepers, come to dust.

Fear no more the frown o’ the great,

Thou art past the tyrant’s stroke;

Care no more to clothe and eat;

To thee the reed is as the oak:

The sceptre, learning, physic, must

All follow this, and come to dust.

Fear no more the lightning flash

Nor the all-dreaded thunder-stone;

Fear not slander, censure rash;

Thou hast finish’d joy and moan:

All lovers young, all lovers must

Consign to thee, and come to dust.

45. The Lord’s my Shepherd – Psalm 23

The Bible

The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. 

He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters. 

He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake. 

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; 

thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.

Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; 

my cup runneth over. 

Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever.

46. Elegy On Thyrza

by Byron

And thou art dead, as young and fair

 As aught of mortal birth;

 And forms so soft and charms so rare

 Too soon return’d to Earth!

 Though Earth received them in her bed,

 And o’er the spot the crowd may tread

 In carelessness or mirth,

 There is an eye which could not brook

 A moment on that grave to look.

 I will not ask where thou liest low

 Nor gaze upon the spot;

 There flowers and weeds at will may grow

 So I behold them not:

 It is enough for me to prove

 That what I loved and long must love

 Like common earth can rot;

 To me there needs no stone to tell

 ‘Tis Nothing that I loved so well.

 Yet did I love thee to the last,

 As fervently as thou

 Who didst not change through all the past

 And canst not alter now.

 The love where Death has set his seal

 Nor age can chill, nor rival steal,

 Nor falsehood disavow:

 And, what were worse, thou canst not see

 Or wrong, or change, or fault in me.

 The better days of life were ours;

 The worst can be but mine:

 The sun that cheers, the storm that lours

 Shall never more be thine.

 The silence of that dreamless sleep

 I envy now too much to weep;

 Nor need I to repine

 That all those charms have pass’d away

 I might have watch’d through long decay.

 The flower in ripen’d bloom unmatch’d

 Must fall the earliest prey;

 Though by no hand untimely snatch’d,

 The leaves must drop away.

 And yet it were a greater grief

 To watch it withering, leaf by leaf,

 Than see it pluck’d to-day;

 Since earthly eye but ill can bear

 To trace the change from foul to fair.

 I know not if I could have borne

 To see thy beauties fade;

 The night that follow’d such a morn

 Had worn a deeper shade:

 Thy day without a cloud hath past,

 And thou wert lovely to the last,

 Extinguish’d, not decay’d;

 As stars that shoot along the sky

 Shine brightest as they fall from high.

 As once I wept if I could weep,

 My tears might well be shed

 To think I was not near, to keep

 One vigil o’er thy bed:

 To gaze, how fondly! on thy face,

 To fold thee in a faint embrace,

 Uphold thy drooping head;

 And show that love, however vain,

 Nor thou nor I can feel again.

 Yet how much less it were to gain,

 Though thou hast left me free,

 The loveliest things that still remain

 Than thus remember thee!

 The all of thine that cannot die

 Through dark and dread Eternity

 Returns again to me,

 And more thy buried love endears

 Than aught except its living years. 

47. When We Lose A Loved One

by Anonymous

When we lose a loved one

Our world just falls apart

We think that we cant carry on

With this broken heart

Everything is different now

You’re upset and you’re annoyed

Your world it seems is shattered

There’s such an awful void

There’s got to be a reason

And we have to understand

God made us and at any time

Hell reach down for our hand

There might not be a warning

We won’t know where or when

The only thing were certain of

Is well meet them once again.

48. Do Not Stand at My Grave and Weep

by Mary Elizabeth Frye

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 glint on snow.

I am the sunlight on ripened grain.

I am the gentle autumn rain. 

When you wake in the morning hush,

I am the swift, uplifting rush

Of quiet birds in circling flight.

I am the soft starlight at night. 

Do not stand at my grave and weep.

I am not there, I do not sleep.

(Do not stand at my grave and cry.

I am not there, I did not die!)

49. No Coward Soul is Mine

by Emily Bronte

No coward soul is mine,

No trembler in the worlds storm-troubled sphere:

I see Heavens glories shine,

And faith shines equal, arming me from fear.

O God within my breast.

Almighty, ever-present Deity!

Life, that in me has rest,

As I, Undying Life, have power in Thee!

Vain are the thousand creeds

That move men’s hearts: unutterably vain;

Worthless as withered weeds,

Or idlest froth amid the boundless main,

To waken doubt in one

Holding so fast by Thine infinity;

So surely anchored on

The steadfast Rock of immortality.

With wide-embracing love

Thy Spirit animates eternal years,

Pervades and broods above,

Changes, sustains, dissolves, creates, and rears.

Though earth and man were gone,

And suns and universes ceased to be,

And Thou wert left alone,

Every existence would exist in Thee.

There is not room for Death,

Nor atom that his might could render void:

Thou, Thou art Being and Breath,

And what Thou art may never be destroyed.

50. When I’m Gone

by Mosiah Lyman Hancock

When I come to the end of my journey

And I travel my last weary mile

Just forget if you can, that I ever frowned

And remember only the smile 

Forget unkind words I have spoken

Remember some good I have done

Forget that I ever had heartache

And remember I’ve had loads of fun 

Forget that I’ve stumbled and blundered

And sometimes fell by the way

Remember I have fought some hard battles

And won, ere the close of the day 

Then forget to grieve for my going

I would not have you sad for a day

But in summer just gather some flowers

And remember the place where I lay 

And come in the shade of evening

When the sun paints the sky in the west

Stand for a few moments beside me

And remember only my best

51. The Prophet

by Khali 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 have reached the mountain top,

then you shall begin to climb.

And the earth shall claim your limbs.

Then shall you truly dance.

52. If I Should Go

by Joyce Grenfell

If I should go before the rest of you

Break not a flower nor inscribe a stone

Nor when I’m 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.

53. All That Was Her

by Oliver Wright

Where’s she gone, the one we knew,

The one we knew and loved,

Who knew us all and loved us all –

Where now is all that love? 

Where now her smile? Where now her frown?

Her bright, resounding laugh?

Ah, all are gone, by time undone;

All that was her is past.

Down the stream we drifted,

And saw her on the shore;

Around a bend we drifted,

And saw her then no more.

And yet still she stands there 

Still stands beside the shore. 

54. As Long As Hearts Remember

by Anonymous

As long as hearts remember

As long as hearts still care

We do not part with those we love

They’re with us everywhere.

55. An Angel Brushed My Shoulder

by Anonymous

An angel at my shoulder heard

The whisper of goodbye

Offering eternity as life slipped silent by

So peacefully it seemed in sleep

You yielded to the love

That reached across my shoulder

To lift you high above

But still you are beside me

And with certainty I know

The hands I can no longer hold

Will guide me as I go

For in that fleeting moment

At the touch of Heaven’s embrace

As one angel brushed my shoulder

Another took its place.

56. Our Memories Build A Special Bridge

by Anonymous

When loved ones have to part

To help us feel were with them still

And soothe a grieving heart

They span the years and warm our lives

Preserving ties that bind

Our memories build a special bridge

And bring us peace of mind 

57. Finis

by Walter Savage Landor

I strove with none, for none was worth my strife.

Nature I loved and, next to Nature, Art:

I warm‘d both hands before the fire of life;

It sinks, and I am ready to depart.

58. In Hearts

by Anonymous

To live in hearts we leave behind

Is not to die

59. Songs of the Death of Children

by Friedrich Ruckert

You must not shut the night inside you,

But endlessly in light the dark immerse.

A tiny lamp has gone out in my tent

I bless the flame that warms the universe.

60. The Candle

by Anonymous

A candle burns bright in a window of gold

A beacon for life’s weary heart

Promising beauty and splendours untold

Of a world that now keeps us apart

We travelled the path of our lives side by side

But this path you walked on your own

To a world where no pain and no suffering reside

While I stay in this world alone

So darling please tend to the candle for me

And nourish the flame lest it dies

Till the day when its radiant beauty I see

And it guides me at last to your side

61. Tis Only We Who Grieve

by Anonymous

Tis only we who grieve

They do not leave

They are not gone

They look upon us still

They walk among the valleys now

They stride upon the hill

Their smile is in the summer sky

Their grace is in the breeze

Their memories whisper in the grass

Their calm is in the trees

Their light is in the winter snow

Their tears are in the rain

Their merriment runs in the brook

Their laughter in the lane

Their gentleness is in the flowers

They sigh in autumn leaves

They do not leave

They are not gone

Tis only we who grieve

If only we could see the splendour of the land

To which our loved ones are called from you and me

We’d understand

If only we could hear the welcome they receive

From old familiar voices all so dear

We would not grieve

If only we could know the reason why they went

We’d smile and wipe away the tears that flow

And wait content.

62. I Carry Your Heart

by Edward Estlin Cummings

I carry your heart with me (I carry it in my heart)

I am never without it (anywhere I go you go, my dear; and whatever is done by only me is your doing, my darling)

I fear no fate (for you are my fate, my sweet)

I want no world (for beautiful you are my world, my true) 

And it’s you are whatever a moon has always meant and whatever a sun will always sing is you

Here is the deepest secret nobody knows (here is the root of the root and the bud of the bud and the sky of a tree called life; 

which grows higher than soul can hope or mind can hide) 

And this is the wonder that’s keeping the stars apart

I carry your heart (I carry it in my heart)

63. It’s Strange

by Anonymous

It’s strange we don’t appreciate

The things we see each day

We never know their value

Till they’re cruelly snatched away

Things I took for granted then

Her voice, her smile, her touch

I always knew I loved her

But I never knew how much

Softly Woo Away Her Breath

by Bryan Procter

Softly woo away her breath,

Gentle death!

Let her leave thee with no strife,

Tender, mournful, murmuring life!

She hath seen her happy day,

She hath had her bud and blossom;

Now she pales and shrinks away,

Earth, into thy gentle bosom! 

She hath done her bidding here,

Angels dear!

Bear her perfect soul above.

Seraph of the skies, sweet love!

Good she was, and fair in youth;

And her mind was seen to soar.

And her heart was wed to truth:

Take her, then, forevermore,

Forever evermore

64. When I Am Dead, My Dearest

by Christina Rossetti

When I am dead, my dearest,

Sing no sad songs for me;

Plant thou no roses at my head,

Nor shady cypress tree:

With showers and dewdrops wet;

And if thou wilt, remember,

And if thou wilt, forget..

I shall not see the shadows,

I shall not feel the rain;

I shall not hear the nightingale

Sing on, as if in pain;

And dreaming through the twilight

That doth not rise nor set,

Haply I may remember

And haply may forget.

65. The Sea Spirit

by Julius Cawein

Ah me! I shall not waken soon

From dreams of such divinity!

A spirit singing ‘neath the moon

To me. 

Wild sea-spray driven of the storm

Is not so wildly white as she,

Who beckoned with a foam-white arm

To me. 

With eyes dark green, and golden-green

Long locks that rippled drippingly,

Out of the green wave she did lean

To me. 

And sang; till Earth and Heaven seemed

A far, forgotten memory,

And more than Heaven in her who gleamed

On me. 

Sleep, sweeter than love’s face or home;

And death’s immutability;

And music of the plangent foam,

For me! 

Sweep over her! with all thy ships,

With all thy stormy tides, O sea!

The memory of immortal lips

For me!

66. Prayer of St. Francis of Assisi

by Francis of Assisi

Lord, make me an instrument of your peace. 

Where this is hatred, let me sow love; 

Where there is injury, pardon; 

Where there is doubt, faith; 

Where there is despair, hope; 

Where there is darkness, light 

And where there is sadness, joy.

O Divine Master, 

grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled as to console; 

to be understood as to understand; 

to be loved as to love. For it is in giving that we receive; 

It is in pardoning that we are pardoned, 

and it is in dying that we are born to eternal life.

67. Poem on Dying

by Anna Barbauld

Life! I know not what thou art,

But know that thou and I must part;

And when, or how, or where we met

I own to me’s a secret yet. 

Life! we’ve been long together

Through pleasant and through cloudy weather;

‘Tis hard to part when friends are dear

Perhaps ’twill cost a sigh, a tear; 

Then steal away, give little warning,

Choose thine own time;

Say not Good Night, but in some brighter clime

Bid me Good Morning.

68. Poem Of Life

by Anonymous

Life is but a stopping place,

A pause in what’s to be,

A resting place along the road,

to sweet eternity.

We all have different journeys,

Different paths along the way,

We all were meant to learn some things,

but never meant to stay…

Our destination is a place,

Far greater than we know.

For some the journey’s quicker,

For some the journey’s slow.

And when the journey finally ends,

We’ll claim a great reward,

And find an everlasting peace,

Together with the lord

69. The Song Of The Soul

by Edwin Leibfreed

Oh to be naked!

My body? Yes, if need be.

My Soul, more than all else.

To be as I am. As small or as large as my Soul.

To speak truth, and scorn man’s wrath.

To laugh at convention.

To rejoice at freedom.

To be hated, as well as loved, for Truth’s sake.

To care no more for reputation

Than reputation cares for me.

For he who worries about reputation,

Has a reputation to worry about.

 

To believe in all things.

To defy nothing but wrong.

To spring at the ivory throat of wrong,

And strangle it with bleeding hands!

To slay it in public or private.

To let the blazing sandals of the feet of the Soul

Burn every evil they tread upon.

To know that every reformer’s life is an avatar.

That reform is justifiable murder.

That every reformer bears a cross.

That the sword, and not the olive-branch,

Is the symbol of regeneration.

And that peace and harmony are its triumphs.

 

To dip into mysteries,

Artlessly, candidly.

To regard life as the Soul’s sacred trust.

To know that every longing of the Soul is holy.

That life, with the Soul predominant,

Is a noble mosaic, a bewitching arabesque.

To answer my mother’s call to my Soul

My sweet mother, Earth, who loves me!

To satisfy any desire I feel,

So long as I bring happiness to some other.

Not wanton waste of life, but holy use.

 

To live as would a child, in its cradle, unashamed.

For they who feel shame have not grown wise;

They have lost the purity of innocence!

To do whatsoever my Soul suggests,

And do it openly.

To know that Thought is greater than words.

That words are but the shining garments of Thought.

To know that Thought creates.

That it is greater than the thing it creates;

That it creates Love;

That it is higher than Love;

That it is holier than Love;

That Love is Thought’s first-born.

Oh for the courage of Truth!

For the courage of honesty!

What beauteous nakedness in these!

 

Only man can blush.

No other creature knows of shame.

Why have we wandered so far away

From simple honesty?

Who taught us so much that is shameful?

Or, is it only our vain imaginings?

Yet, after all, God is not shocked

At anything he sees.

Or else, seeing, and feeling shame,

He would not tolerate what he sees.

 

To what extent shall I glory in my passions?

I glory not at all.

Nor do I reproach myself because of them.

I glory in normality;

In strength, and natural desire.

And when my soul calls on these,

They shall answer, and not shame me.

I believe in all that I am.

I believe in more than I am.

I believe in all that I should be,

Because Nature and God believe in me,

Therefore I am,

And, therefore, have I confidence!

Seeing I have been so honored,

Shall I have less respect for myself than God?

Shall I pervert and destroy?

Nay, rather I will conserve.

I will sacredly cherish.

Then shall I rejoice in my abundance.

I shall not know poverty.

 

What a conservator is God!

And, yet, the abundance withal!

The normal soul is ever rich.

Poverty of soul, or of mind, or of body

Is a crime.

Nature punishes every crime.

Her honesty forbids dishonesty.

How merciful is nature! How just!

Nature is very kind.

Nature and I are happy friends.

 

Now let me speak my mind to you.

One assertion of yourself, and you are born.

One fearless sentence, and you are strong.

One battle with your darling vice,

And you become a champion.

A knowledge of one fragment of Truth,

And you have entered heaven’s kingdom.

One glance of purity at a human form,

And you are saved.

One cry to God, and the answer of the universe.

One feast of true love, and hunger no more.

He who strives for happiness is a fool.

The wise man makes happiness for another.

 

There is one forum to which all may go,

And be heard–the Mind.

One eager auditor–the Soul.

One kind old servitor–the Body.

There is more genius undiscovered,

Than genius to discover.

Not all of us shall have his song heard.

Some, who only rehearse the song here,

Shall sing it in triumph and honor

In Music’s ultimate realms,

Before all the great singers of Time,

And before the King of Songs.

The blackest murder is the killing

Of the Soul’s aspirations!

Ten thousand deaths do they inflict

Who strangle the ambition of the Soul!

 

Let the drawn curtains of the House of the Soul

Be parted. Others need the sight.

How sensitive is the Soul! The tenderest dove

Is an adventurer compared with it.

The Soul can hear the violets grow!

It can hear the throbbing heart of God!

Who would scotch my Soul?

Who would make me afraid of myself?

Is a man ashamed when he bathes?

Of what should he be ashamed?

Not of what he bathes,

But of what he does not bathe.

Tears are the Soul’s baptism of cleansing.

Describe a smile, and you deserve immortality;

The pleasure of a kiss,

And you deserve them all;

The value of a tear,

And you have knowledge like unto God’s!

 

Love is the sweetest, yet the saddest thing.

The portal of the heart is emotion.

Motion and emotion are kin.

I sob over colors as some men over music.

Music is the highest expression of any art.

All art resolves itself at last into music.

All life seeks harmony.

Love is the Soul’s exquisite vibrations,

Slow or rapid, sad or gay.

Love is the Soul at song.

All sense must have feeling, focus, form.

The highest form is harmony.

The fine art of Life is to make

Another Soul vibrate with a song of joy.

Technique is as elastic as Mind.

Perfection is as fixed as Divine Will.

The azure is alive with motion.

The Soul is most alive

When stirred by emotion.

The message is the thing!

 

Oh to sing my song that is bursting my heart!

To sing it, and let others sing it, too,

Until such time as their own songs

Shall break the chrysalis that binds them,

And, on the lightest-feathered wings,

Go unto God who sings a deathless song.

Who would not journey thus?

And with my song liberated,

Go sauntering on to willing ears,

Enter in, and be at home,

Because of kindred life.

A vesper bell shall toll for the Soul.

Oh, take me, you who love sincerity and truth!

Take me, and embrace me. Kiss me!

I am but a traveler from the sky.

Home! Home! I journey to the only home I know.

The only heaven that I care to know.

There all is love. There all receive all.

Suspicion cannot flourish there,

Nor hate breathe one single gasp of life.

 

Let me begin to undress my Soul before you.

It is as pure as thought.

It is as sweet as jessamine.

It is as melancholy as sorrow.

It is as merry as joy.

It is as clean as the running water

In a cress-fringed brook.

It is as warm as the human breath.

It is as open as the eye.

Yea, it is as clear, too.

It is as tender as love.

It is as yielding as the flesh.

It is as modest as the dew.

It is as chaste as falling snow.

It is as true as the stars.

It is as old as God, Himself.

It is as young as life.

It is as far removed from malice

As is death itself.

Lo, it lies white and waiting!

Waiting what? Waiting whom?

Waiting expression;

Waiting the one who can interpret it;

Waiting the one who needs it;

Waiting the eternal purpose for which it came.

Who knows its throbbing tenderness? Who cares?

Oh the pity of onlooking disinterestedness!

Oh the pain of unrequited hope!

 

I stand in the presence of the Eternal!

I am not afraid. He made me thus.

He admits me to His sacred places.

He scorns me not;

Oh men, men, why have ye scorned?

Lo, some day we shall be striding together

Through the infinite worlds!

And you? I shall be helping you to the heights

That have been revealed to me through fearless thought.

I will unlock for you the iron doors of Truth.

You shall see all I see,

And seeing, be no more afraid than I.

And you will love me for my very nakedness,

Just as you will love Truth.

Oh, love me now! I hunger so.

 

Let me be naked awhile before the holiest thing.

For nothing can harm me, but myself.

See, I am refreshed!

The shower sends its silver arrows

Into my warm flesh.

I am not afraid. I am renewed.

My Soul lives many lives.

Each life a thought, each thought a life.

I am but Thought.

See, now, how you would revile!

Revile me then. I shall hear you not.

A sexual blunder would you make of me!

Will God have need to breed thought

In dying protoplasm?

Thought is not born of flesh,

And needs not flesh to live.

It enters, only, into flesh as would light,

Or more potent still, as love.

 

I pass into flesh. I am light.

Oh, let me shine in the dark flesh of eagerness!

Let me enter into the bosom of ignorance

And split it with my golden radiance!

The Soul’s dreams are titanic, not satanic.

Let me kiss Truth once more!

Let me taste the bliss of wedlock with Truth!

I would breed thoughts, but not in flesh;

For they would be but dead, and deadly things.

 

I would suffice for myself,

And then for all who need me.

I make no cross. It is already made for me.

How gladly do I climb the Hill of the Skull

To die for Truth, since Truth has lived for me!

For death is but a passing phase of Life;

A change of dress, a disrobing;

A birth into the unborn again;

A commencing where we ended;

A starting where we stopped to rest;

A crossroad of Eternity;

A giving up of something, to possess all things.

The end of the unreal, the beginning of the real;

Not cessation, but continuance;

Not exit, but entrance;

Not destruction, but life;

How wise the plan of death!

Death sanctifies everything;

Forgives everything; understands everything.

There is light in the darkest room.

There is light in the blackest night.

There is light in the tomb.

There is hope in the darkest hour.

There is hope in the blackest heart.

There is hope in the dead.

How rhapsodical is the Song of the Soul!

It cannot bide restraint or measure.

Sweeter than melody, loftier than harmony,

It is music itself!

 

Come, naked Soul, be never dressed again.

Go in unto God, more naked still,

And fear no evil, for He knoweth none.

Into His presence come, and talk of Life–

Your life of broken song.

What notes of joy He will supply!

He will not rob me of my Soul.

My Song, my Hope, nor destroy aught.

He will share His matchless Home with me.

And why not?

Did he not grant me here a Palace

In which to dwell, and shall I doubt

The value of a Soul to Him

Who found it worthy of a first solicitude,

And then a constant care?

Would He deny me now, when face to face?

 

Alone with God! How shall I further speak?

I seem to feel the hush of Time,

The end of mortal things.

A thrill, unknown before, possesses me.

How near to God I seem!

Some larger purpose holds my view.

I thought to stay here,

Resigned, contented, all alive.

Oh bliss of fuller life!

Oh the sublime gestures of the Soul!

My nakedness to me is very sweet!

 

Return me if thou wilt, O God,

To earth, or commend me to

Some other sphere if destiny speak so.

I feel the thrill of an eternal plan.

Lo, nothing is lost, not even Time that ceased!

It was the marker, Truth required for this day.

How sweet to be with Truth!

And, yet, still sweeter is it to be Truth, itself!

70. To Those I Love

by Paschal Richardson

If I should ever leave you whom I love

To go along the Silent Way,

Grieve not,

Nor speak of me with tears,

But laugh and talk

Of me as if I were beside you there.

(I‘d come-I‘d come, could I but find a way!

But would not tears and grief be barriers?)

And when you hear a song or

See a bird I loved,

Please do not let the thought of me be sad…

For I am loving you just as I always have…

You were so good to me!

There are so many things I wanted still

To do—so many things to say to you…

Remember that I did not fear—

It was just leaving you that was so hard to face…

We cannot see Beyond…

But this I know:

I loved you so –

Twas heaven here with you!

71. Good-bye, My Fancy!

by Walt Whitman

Good-bye my Fancy!

Farewell dear mate, dear love!

I‘m going away, I know not where,

Or to what fortune, or whether I may ever see you again,

So Good-bye my Fancy.

Now for my last – let me look back a moment;

The slower fainter ticking of the clock is in me,

Exit, nightfall, and soon the heart-thud stopping.

Long have we lived, joy‘d, carress‘d together;

Delightful! – now separation – Good-bye my Fancy.

Yet let me not be too hasty,

Long indeed have we lived, slept, filter‘d, become really blended into one;

Then if we die we die together, (Yes, we‘ll remain one,)

If we go anywhere we‘ll go together to meet what happens,

May-be we‘ll be better off and blither, and learn something,

May-be it is yourself now really ushering me to the true songs, (who knows?)

May-be it is you the mortal knob really undoing, turning – so now finally,

Good-bye – and hail! my Fancy.

72. Love Shines Through

by Anonymous

Like a shadow in the moonlight

Like the whisper of the seas

Like the echoes of a melody

Just beyond our reach

In the shadow of our sorrow

Past the whisper of goodbye

Love shines through eternity

A heartbeat from our eye

73. Remember Me

by Margaret Mead

To the living, I am gone, 

To the sorrowful, I will never return, 

To the angry, I was cheated, 

But to the happy, I am at peace, 

And to the faithful, I have never left.

I cannot speak, but I can listen. 

I cannot be seen, but I can be heard. 

So as you stand upon a shore gazing at a beautiful sea, 

As you look upon a flower and admire its simplicity, 

Remember me.

Remember me in your heart: 

Your thoughts, and your memories, 

Of the times we loved, 

The times we cried, 

The times we fought, 

The times we laughed. 

For if you always think of me, I will never have gone.

74. Then Joy Stepped In

by Anonymous

Said she, ‘I will not live with grief from morrow unto morrow.

My heart cries out for some relief, ‘Good-bye, my little sorrow.’

She closed the windows of her home and pulled down every blind.

‘I’m going forth, ‘ she cried, ‘to roam. You, Grief, can stay behind.’

‘And I’ll be gone the livelong day, expect me back to-night.’ 

Grief wanly watched her go away into the warmth and light;

With quickened step and brightened eyes she mingled with the throng.

Instead of pale Grief’s moans and sighs she heard Endeavour’s song.

She saw a sister, crossed the road and asked her how she fared:

Then helped to lift her heavy load and in the burden shared.

Throughout the day Self was suppressed whilst Service took its place.

When she returned at night to rest – of Grief there was no trace!

But Joy stepped forth and sweetly said,

‘May I now be your friend instead?’

75. Farewell, Sweet Dust

by Anonymous

ow I have lost you, I must scatter

All of you on the air henceforth;

Not that to me it can ever matter

But it‘s only fair to the rest of the earth.

Now especially, when it is winter

And the sun‘s not half as bright as it was,

Who wouldn‘t be glad to find a splinter

That once was you, in the frozen grass?

Snowflakes, too, will be softer feathered,

Clouds, perhaps, will be whiter plumed;

Rain, whose brilliance you caught and gathered,

Purer silver have resumed.

Farewell, sweet dust; I never was a miser:

Once, for a minute, I made you mine:

Now you are gone, I am none the wiser

But the leaves of the willow are as bright as wine. 

76. Poem To A Lost Love

by Thomas Moore

At the mid hour of night, when stars are weeping, I fly

To the lone vale we loved, when life shone warm in Thine eye;

And I think oft, if spirits can steal from the regions Of air

To revisit past scenes of delight, thou wilt come to Me there

And tell me our love is remember’d even in the sky!

Then I sing the wild song it once was rapture to hear

When our voices, commingling, breathed like one on

The ear;

And as Echo far off through the vale my sad orison Rolls,

I think, O my love! ’tis thy voice, from the Kingdom Of Souls

Faintly answering still the notes that once were so dear.

77. Celebrating A Life-In Words Of One Syllable

by Tony Sims

Strange that it should be so, 

Be born and live and grow,

Watch weird new worlds go by

In the blink of an eye.

Wake up to days of gold, 

And shake when nights grow cold,

Hear frogs plop in still ponds

Fringed by ranks of tall wands, 

And quake as mad March mirth

Stirs seeds in new warmed earth

To birth a Spring, and spray

White blooms in a green May.

With day’s drum beat is done,

When dark clouds hide the sun,

Turn to cast an awed eye

On gems spilt in the sky. 

Strange that it should be so-

This non stop ebb and flow, 

Fixed in a flux of ghost

And flint and blood-yet most

Strange of all, though our din

Of brave words is lost in

A deaf wind’s rise and fall-

The breath to say it all.

78. Remember Me – I Will Live Forever

by Robert Test

The day will come when my body will lie upon a white sheet neatly tucked under four corners of a mattress located in a hospital; busily occupied with the living and the dying. At a certain moment a doctor will determine that my brain has ceased to function and that, for all intents and purposes, my life has stopped.

When that happens, do not attempt to instill artificial life into my body by the use of a machine. And don’t call this my deathbed. Let it be called the bed of life, and let my body be taken from it to help others lead fuller lives.

Give my sight to the man who has never seen a sunrise, a baby’s face or love in the eyes of a woman.

Give my heart to a person whose own heart has caused nothing but endless days of pain.

Give my blood to the teenager who was pulled from the wreckage of his car, so that he might live to see his grandchildren play.

Give my kidneys to the one who depends on a machine to exist from week to week.

Take my bones, every muscle, every fiber and nerve in my body and find a way to make a crippled child walk.

Explore every corner of my brain.

Take my cells, if necessary, and let them grow so that, someday a speechless boy will shout at the crack of a bat and a deaf girl will hear the sound of rain against her window.

Burn what is left of me and scatter the ashes to the winds to help the flowers grow.

If you must bury something, let it be my faults, my weakness and all prejudice against my fellow man.

Give my sins to the devil. Give my soul to God. If, by chance, you wish to remember me, do it with a kind deed or word to someone who needs you. If you do all I have asked, I will live forever.

79. The Death Bed

by Thomas Hood

We watch’d her breathing thro’ the night,

Her breathing soft and low,

As in her breast the wave of life

Kept heaving to and fro.

But when the morn came dim and sad

And chill with early showers,

Her quiet eyelids closed–she had

Another morn than ours.

80. My Journey’s Just Begun

by Ellen Brenneman

Don’t think of me as gone away

My journey’s just begun

Life holds so many facets

This earth is but one

Just think of me as resting

From the sorrows and the tears

In a place of warmth and comfort

Where there are no days and years

Think of how I must be wishing

That you could know today

How nothing but your sadness

Can really go away

And think of me as living

In the hearts of those I touched

For nothing loved is ever lost

And I know I was loved so much

81. Not, How Did He Die, But How Did He Live?

by Anonymous

Not, how did he die, but how did he live?

Not, what did he gain, but what did he give?

These are the units to measure the worth

Of a man as a man, regardless of his birth.

Nor what was his church, nor what was his creed?

But had he befriended those really in need?

Was he ever ready, with words of good cheer,

To bring back a smile, to banish a tear?

Not what did the sketch in the newspaper say,

But how many were sorry when he passed away?

82. In Memory

by Joyce Kilmer

Serene and beautiful and very wise,

Most erudite in curious Grecian lore,

You lay and read your learned books, and bore

A weight of unshed tears and silent sighs.

The song within your heart could never rise

Until love bade it spread its wings and soar.

Nor could you look on Beauty‘s face before

A poet‘s burning mouth had touched your eyes.

Love is made out of ecstasy and wonder;

Love is a poignant and accustomed pain.

It is a burst of Heaven-shaking thunder;

It is a linnet‘s fluting after rain.

Love‘s voice is through your song;

Above and under

And in each note to echo and remain

A red rose is His Sacred Heart,

A white rose is His face,

And His breath has turned the barren

World to a rich and flowery place.

He is the Rose of Sharon,

His gardener am I,

And I shall drink His fragrance

In Heaven when I die.

83. Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night

by Dylan Thomas

Do not go gentle into that good night,

Old age should burn and rave at close of day;

Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Though wise men at their end know dark is right,

Because their words had forked no lightning they

Do not go gentle into that good night.

Good men, the last wave by, crying how bright

Their frail deeds might have danced in a green bay,

Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Wild men who caught and sang the sun in flight,

And learn, too late, they grieved it on its way,

Do not go gentle into that good night.

Grave men, near death, who see with blinding sight

Blind eyes could blaze like meteors and be gay,

Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

And you, my father, there on the sad height,

Curse, bless, me now with your fierce tears, I pray.

Do not go gentle into that good night.

Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

84. Virtue Immortal

by George Herbert

Sweet day, so cool, so calm, so bright,

The bridall of the earth and skie;

The dew shall weep thy fall to-night;

For thou must die. 

Sweet Rose, whose hue angrie and brave

Bids the rash gazer wipe his eye,

Thy root is ever in its grave,

And all must die. 

Sweet Spring, full of sweet dayes and roses,

A box where sweets compacted lie,

Thy musick shows ye have your closes,

And all must die. 

Onely a sweet and vertuous soul,

Like seasoned timber, never gives;

But, though the whole world, turn to coal,

Then chiefly lives.

85. Requiem

by Robert Louis Stevenson

Under the wide and starry sky,

Dig the grave and let me lie.

Glad did I live and gladly die,

And I laid me down with a will.

This be the verse you gave for me:

Here he lies where he longed to be;

Home is the sailor, home from the sea,

And the hunter home from the hill.

86. Of Joy and Sorrow

by Khalil Gibran

Then a woman said, ―Speak to us of Joy and Sorrow.‖

And he answered:

Your joy is your sorrow unmasked.

And the selfsame well from which your laughter rises was oftentimes filled with your

And how else can it be?

The deeper that sorrow carves into your being, the more joy you can contain.

Is not the cup that hold your wine the very cup that was burned in the potter‘s oven?

And is not the lute that soothes your spirit, the very wood that was hollowed with

knives?

When you are joyous, look deep into your heart and you shall find it is only that which

has given you sorrow that is giving you joy.

When you are sorrowful look again in your heart, and you shall see that in truth you

are weeping for that which has been your delight.

Some of you say, ―Joy is greater than sorrow,‖ and others say, ―Nay, sorrow is the

greater.‖ But I say unto you, they are inseparable.

Together they come, and when one sits alone with you at your board, remember that

the other is asleep upon your bed.

Verily you are suspended like scales between your sorrow and your joy.

Only when you are empty are you at standstill and balanced.

When the treasure-keeper lifts you to weigh his gold and his silver, needs must your

joy or your sorrow rise or fall.

87. On Death

by Khalil Gibran

Then Almitra spoke, saying, “We would ask now of Death.”

And he said: “You would know the secret of death.

But how shall you find it unless you seek it in the heart of life?

The owl whose night-bound eyes are blind unto the day cannot unveil the mystery of light.

If you would indeed behold the spirit of death, open your heart wide unto the body of life.

For life and death are one, even as the river and the sea are one.

In the depth of your hopes and desires lies your silent knowledge of the beyond;

And like seeds dreaming beneath the snow your heart dreams of spring.

Trust the dreams, for in them is hidden the gate to eternity.

Your fear of death is but the trembling of the shepherd when he stands before the king whose hand is to be laid upon him in honor.

Is the shepherd not joyful beneath his trembling, that he shall wear the mark of the king?

Yet is he not more mindful of his trembling?

For what is it to die but to stand naked in the wind and to melt into the sun?

And what is 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 have reached the mountain top, then you shall begin to climb.

And when the earth shall claim your limbs, then shall you truly dance.

88. A Valediction, Forbidding Mourning

by John Donne

As virtuous men pass mildly away, 

And whisper to their souls to go, 

Whilst some of their sad friends do say 

The breath goes now, and some say, No:

So let us melt, and make no noise, 

No tear-floods, nor sigh-tempests move; 

‘Twere profanation of our joys 

To tell the laity our love.

Moving of th’ earth brings harms and fears, 

Men reckon what it did, and meant; 

But trepidation of the spheres,

Though greater far, is innocent.

Dull sublunary lovers’ love 

(Whose soul is sense) cannot admit 

Absence, because it doth remove 

Those things which elemented it.

But we by a love so much refined, 

That our selves know not what it is, 

Inter-assured of the mind, 

Care less, eyes, lips, and hands to miss.

Our two souls therefore, which are one, 

Though I must go, endure not yet 

A breach, but an expansion, 

Like gold to airy thinness beat.

If they be two, they are two so 

As stiff twin compasses are two; 

Thy soul, the fixed foot, makes no show 

To move, but doth, if the other do.

And though it in the center sit, 

Yet when the other far doth roam, 

It leans and hearkens after it, 

And grows erect, as that comes home.

Such wilt thou be to me, who must, 

Like th’ other foot, obliquely run; 

Thy firmness makes my circle just, 

And makes me end where I begun.

89. Farewell

by Anna Bronte

Farewell to thee! but not farewell

To all my fondest thoughts of thee:

Within my heart they still shall dwell;

And they shall cheer and comfort me.

O beautiful, and full of grace!

If thou hadst never met mine eye,

I had not dreamed a living face

Could fancied charms so far outvie.

If I may ne‘er behold again

That form and face so dear to me,

Nor hear thy voice, still would I fain

Preserve, for aye, their memory.

That voice, the magic of whose tone

Can wake an echo in my breast,

Creating feelings that, alone,

Can make my tranced spirit blest.

That laughing eye, whose sunny beam

My memory would not cherish less; –

And oh, that smile! whose joyous gleam

Nor mortal language can express.

Adieu, but let me cherish, still,

The hope with which I cannot part.

Contempt may wound and coldness chill,

But still it lingers in my heart.

And who can tell but Heaven, at last,

May answer all my thousand prayers,

And bid the future pay the past

With joy for anguish, smiles for tears?

90. Precious Memory

by Unknown

The rain may wash my pain away

The wind may dry my tears

The Summer sun may heal my heart

And time subdue my fears

But nothing in the world below

Or in the Heavens above

Will ever take away

The precious memory of your love.

91. Memories

by John Whittier

A beautiful and happy girl,

With step as light as summer air,

Eyes glad with smiles, and brow of pearl,

Shadowed by many a careless curl

Of unconfined and flowing hair;

A seeming child in everything,

Save thoughtful brow and ripening charms,

As Nature wears the smile of Spring

When sinking into Summer’s arms. 

A mind rejoicing in the light

Which melted through its graceful bower,

Leaf after leaf, dew-moist and bright,

And stainless in its holy white,

Unfolding like a morning flower

A heart, which, like a fine-toned lute,

With every breath of feeling woke,

And, even when the tongue was mute,

From eye and lip in music spoke. 

How thrills once more the lengthening chain

Of memory, at the thought of thee!

Old hopes which long in dust have lain

Old dreams, come thronging back again,

And boyhood lives again in me;

I feel its glow upon my cheek,

Its fulness of the heart is mine,

As when I leaned to hear thee speak,

Or raised my doubtful eye to thine.

 

I hear again thy low replies,

I feel thy arm within my own,

And timidly again uprise

The fringed lids of hazel eyes,

With soft brown tresses overblown.

Ah! memories of sweet summer eves,

Of moonlit wave and willowy way,

Of stars and flowers, and dewy leaves,

And smiles and tones more dear than they! 

Ere this, thy quiet eye hath smiled

My picture of thy youth to see,

When, half a woman, half a child,

Thy very artlessness beguiled,

And folly’s self seemed wise in thee;

I too can smile, when o’er that hour

The lights of memory backward stream,

Yet feel the while that manhood’s power

Is vainer than my boyhood’s dream.

 Years have passed on, and left their trace,

Of graver care and deeper thought;

And unto me the calm, cold face

Of manhood, and to thee the grace

Of woman’s pensive beauty brought.

More wide, perchance, for blame than praise,

The school-boy’s humble name has flown;

Thine, in the green and quiet ways

Of unobtrusive goodness known. 

And wider yet in thought and deed

Diverge our pathways, one in youth;

Thine the Genevan’s sternest creed,

While answers to my spirit’s need

The Derby dalesman’s simple truth.

For thee, the priestly rite and prayer,

And holy day, and solemn psalm;

For me, the silent reverence where

My brethren gather, slow and calm. 

Yet hath thy spirit left on me

An impress Time has worn not out,

And something of myself in thee,

A shadow from the past, I see,

Lingering, even yet, thy way about;

Not wholly can the heart unlearn

That lesson of its better hours,

Not yet has Time’s dull footstep worn

To common dust that path of flowers. 

Thus, while at times before our eyes

The shadows melt, and fall apart,

And, smiling through them, round us lies

The warm light of our morning skies,

The Indian Summer of the heart!

In secret sympathies of mind,

In founts of feeling which retain

Their pure, fresh flow, we yet may find

Our early dreams not wholly vai 

92. Turn Again To Life

by Mary Lee Hall

If I should die and leave you here a while,

Be not like others sore undone,

Who keep long vigil by the silent dust.

For my sake turn again to life and smile,

Nerving thy heart and trembling hand to do

Something to comfort other hearts than thine.

Complete these dear unfinished tasks of mine

And I perchance may therein comfort you.

93. Love Lives Beyond the Tomb

by John Clare

And earth, which fades like dew:

I love the fond,

The faithful, and the true.

Love lives in sleep:

Tis happiness of healthy dreams:

Eve‘s dews may weep,

But love delightful seems.

Tis seen in flowers,

And in the morning‘s pearly dew;

In earth‘s green hours,

And in the heaven‘s eternal blue.

Tis heard in Spring

When light and sunbeams, warm and kind,

On angel‘s wing

Bring love and music to the mind.

And where‘s the voice,

So young, so beautiful, and sweet

As Nature‘s choice,

Where Spring and lovers meet?

Love lives beyond the tomb,

And earth, which fades like dew:

I love the fond,

The faithful, and the true.

94. My Mother’s Sleep Is Deep

by Margaret Wilmot

My mother‘s sleep is deep as drifts of snow.

Snow-white the moon which plays with rays like fingers,

Smoothes and lingers on her white sheet. The slow

Touch and flow is magic, stirring earth from night

Towards day, from sleep to life. A tide sheering, soaking.

Currents below stroke, tug. Atoms disunite

In dark earth floating free; grains that sleep unseen

Conjoin. My mother‘s bones are green blades rising

With the light. They will be snowdrops soon, snow-green

95. You’ve Just Walked On Ahead of Me

by Joyce Grenfell

And I’ve got to understand

You must release the ones you love

And let go of their hand.

I try and cope the best I can

But I’m missing you so much

If I could only see you

And once more feel your touch.

Yes, you’ve just walked on ahead of me

Don’t worry I’ll be fine

But now and then I swear I feel

Your hand slip into mine. 

96. Adonais

by Shelley

Peace, peace! he is not dead, he doth not sleep —

He hath awakened from the dream of life —

‘Tis we, who lost in stormy visions, keep

With phantoms an unprofitable strife,

And in mad trance, strike with our spirit’s knife

Invulnerable nothings. — We decay

Like corpses in a charnel; fear and grief

Convulse us and consume us day by day,

And cold hopes swarm like worms within our living clay.

The One remains, the many change and pass;

Heaven’s light forever shines, Earth’s shadows fly;

Life, like a dome of many-coloured glass,

Stains the white radiance of Eternity,

Until Death tramples it to fragments. — Die,

If thou wouldst be with that which thou dost seek!

Follow where all is fled!—Rome’s azure sky,

Flowers, ruins, statues, music, words, are weak

The glory they transfuse with fitting truth to speak.

97. Precious Flower

by Unknown

Lord take my tiny precious flower

Who had no time to bloom

Lift her gently in your arms

And find a little room

In the Heavenly garden

That you planted high above

Then care for her and keep her safe

Within your perfect love

Find a little corner

In a quiet sheltered place

Where she can feel the healing sun

Caress her lovely face

Give her the tender caring

That I can no longer give

Hold her with your gentle hands

And let her fragrance live

The dearest and the loveliest

Of flowers that ever grew

My precious gift from

Heaven I return, dear Lord, to you

98. Let Me Go

by Christina Rossetti

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 for long

And not with your head bowed low

Remember the love that once we 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.

Laugh at all the things we used to do

Miss me, but let me go.

99. A Song of Living

by Amelia Burr

Because I have loved life, I shall have no sorrow to die.

I have sent up my gladness on wings, to be lost in the blue of the sky.

I have run and leaped with the rain,

I have taken the wind to my breast.

My cheek like a drowsy child

to the face of the earth I have pressed.

Because I have loved life,

I shall have no sorrow to die.

100. Death The Leveller

by James Shirley

The glories of our blood and state

Are shadows, not substantial things;

There is no armour against fate;

Death lays his icy hand on kings:

Sceptre and Crown

Must tumble down,

And in the dust be equal made

With the poor crooked scythe and spade.

Some men with swords may reap the field,

And plant fresh laurels where they kill:

But their strong nerves at last must yield;

They tame but one another still:

Early or late

They stoop to fate,

And must give up their murmuring breath

When they, pale captives, creep to death.

The garlands wither on your brow;

Then boast no more your mighty deeds;

Upon Death’s purple altar now

See where the victor-victim bleeds:

Your heads must come

To the cold tomb;

Only the actions of the just

Smell sweet, and blossom in their dust. 

101. Footprints On The Sands Of Time

by Henry Wadsworth

Tell me not, in mournful numbers,

 Life is but an empty dream! –

For the soul is dead that slumbers,

 And things are not what they seem.

 Life is real! Life is earnest!

 And the grave is not its goal;

 Dust thou art, to dust returnest,

 Was not spoken of the soul.

 Not enjoyment, and not sorrow,

 Is our destined end or way;

 But to act, that each to-morrow

 Find us farther than to-day.

 Art is long, and Time is fleeting,

 And our hearts, though stout and brave,

 Still, like muffled drums, are beating

 Funeral marches to the grave.

 Trust no Future, howe’er pleasant!

 Let the dead Past bury its dead!

 Act, — act in the living Present!

 Heart within, and God o’erhead!

 Lives of great men all remind us

 We can make our lives sublime,

 And, departing, leave behind us

 Footprints on the sands of time;

 Footprints, that perhaps another,

 Sailing o’er life’s solemn main,

 A forlorn and shipwrecked brother,

 Seeing, shall take heart again.

 Let us, then, be up and doing,

 With a heart for any fate;

 Still achieving, still pursuing,

 Learn to labor and to wait.

102. Goodbye

by Catherine Turner

I never knew a single word could alter all it touched

I never knew a word could make me cry

I never knew our last sad word would break my heart so much

I never knew…. before we said goodbye.

103. On His Own Death

by Walter Landor

Death stands above me, whispering low

I know not what into my ear:

Of his strange language all I know

Is, there is not a word of fear. 

104. Irish Blessing

(sun shine warm upon your face)

by Unknown

May the roads rise up to meet you,

May the wind be always at your back,

May the sun shine warm upon your face,

May the rains fall soft upon fields

And until we meet again

May God hold you in the palm of his hand.

105. After Their Death

by Judith Pordon

You might be covered

By eyelids closed

Over your whole being,

Or reach with desperation

For something alive

To hold onto.

Your fingertips will hide

In a fist. No more palms

Open to life.

Humbled, the very ground

Will seem so large. Someday

The earth will own you.

Or you see there’s no time

To waste, and plow

Into previously feared goals.

Try to be patient

If it takes you years

To return.

This is the exit from Eden,

When you have chosen life

While wanting to die.

This is the fall that gives

Wisdom, perspective, gratefulness.

It is worth the crawl, back to life.

106. Beyond The Empty Chair

by Unknown

Look beyond the empty chair

To know a life well spent

Look beyond the solitude

To days of true content

in your broken heart

Each moment gladly shared

And feel the touch of memory

Beyond the empty chair.

107. Coronach

by Sir Walter Scott

He is gone on the mountain,

He is lost to the forest

Like a summer-dried fountain,

When our need was the sorest.

The fount reappearing

From the raindrops shall borrow,

But to us comes no cheering,

To Duncan no morrow!

The hand of the reaper

Take the ears that are hoary,

But the voice of the weeper

Wails manhood in glory.

The autumn winds rushing

Waft the leaves that are serest,

But our flower was in flushing

When blighting was nearest.

Fleet foot on the correi,

Sage counsel in cumber,

Red hand in the foray,

How sound is thy slumber!

Like the dew on the mountain,

Like the foam on the river,

Like the bubble on the fountain,

Thou art gone, and for ever!

108. O Captain! My Captain!

by Walt Whitman

O Captain! my Captain! our fearful trip is done, 

The ship has weather’d every rack, the prize we sought is won, 

The port is near, the bells I hear, the people all exulting, 

While follow eyes the steady keel, the vessel grim and daring; 

But O heart! heart! heart! 

O the bleeding drops of red, 

Where on the deck my Captain lies, 

Fallen cold and dead.

O Captain! my Captain! rise up and hear the bells; 

Rise up—for you the flag is flung—for you the bugle trills, 

For you bouquets and ribbon’d wreaths—for you the shores a-crowding, 

For you they call, the swaying mass, their eager faces turning; 

Here Captain! dear father! 

This arm beneath your head! 

It is some dream that on the deck, 

You’ve fallen cold and dead.

My Captain does not answer, his lips are pale and still, 

My father does not feel my arm, he has no pulse nor will, 

The ship is anchor’d safe and sound, its voyage closed and done, 

From fearful trip the victor ship comes in with object won; 

Exult O shores, and ring O bells! 

But I with mournful tread, 

Walk the deck my Captain lies, 

Fallen cold and dead.

109. To Sleep

by John Keats

O soft embalmer of the still midnight,

Shutting, with careful

Fingers and benign,

Our gloom-pleas‘d eyes,

Embower‘d from the light,

Enshaded in forgetfulness divine:

O soothest Sleep! if so it please thee, close

In midst of this thine hymn my willing eyes,

Or wait the ―Amen,‖ ere thy poppy throws

Around my bed its lulling charities.

Then save me, or the passed day will shine

Upon my pillow, breeding many woes,–

Save me from curious Conscience,

That still lords

Its strength for darkness,

Burrowing like a mole;

Turn the key deftly

In the oiled wards,

And seal the hushed

Casket of my Soul.

110. Near Shady Wall A Rose Once Grew

by A L Frink

Near shady wall a rose once grew

Budded and blossomed in God’s free light,

Watered and fed by morning dew

Shedding its sweetness day and night. 

As it grew and blossomed fair and tall

Slowly rising to loftier height,

It came to a crevice in the wall

Through which there shone a beam of light. 

Onward it crept with added strength

With never a thought of fear of pride,

It followed the light through the crevices length

And unfolded itself on the other side.

 

The light, the dew, the broadening view

Were found the same as they were before,

And it lost itself in beauties new

Breathing its fragrance more and more.

Shall claim of death cause us to grieve

And make our courage faint or fail,

Nay, let us faith and hope receive,

The rose still grows beyond the wall

Scattering fragrance far and wide,

Just as it did in the days of yore

Just as it did on the other side

Just as it will forever more.

111. God Saw You

by Anonymous

God saw you getting tired,

When a cure was not to be.

So He wrapped his arms around you,

and whispered, “Come to me”.

You didn’t deserve what you went through,

So He gave you rest.

God’s garden must be beautiful,

He only takes the best

And when I saw you sleeping,

So peaceful and free from pain

I could not wish you back

To suffer that again.

113. Annabel Lee

by Edgar Allen Poe

It was many and many a year ago, 

In a kingdom by the sea, 

That a maiden there lived whom you may know 

By the name of Annabel Lee; 

And this maiden she lived with no other thought 

Than to love and be loved by me.

I was a child and she was a child, 

In this kingdom by the sea, 

But we loved with a love that was more than love— 

I and my Annabel Lee— 

With a love that the wingèd seraphs of Heaven 

Coveted her and me.

And this was the reason that, long ago, 

In this kingdom by the sea, 

A wind blew out of a cloud, chilling 

My beautiful Annabel Lee; 

So that her highborn kinsmen came 

And bore her away from me, 

To shut her up in a sepulchre 

In this kingdom by the sea.

The angels, not half so happy in Heaven, 

Went envying her and me— 

Yes!—that was the reason (as all men know, 

In this kingdom by the sea) 

That the wind came out of the cloud by night, 

Chilling and killing my Annabel Lee.

But our love it was stronger by far than the love 

Of those who were older than we— 

Of many far wiser than we— 

And neither the angels in Heaven above 

Nor the demons down under the sea 

Can ever dissever my soul from the soul 

Of the beautiful Annabel Lee;

For the moon never beams, without bringing me dreams 

Of the beautiful Annabel Lee; 

And the stars never rise, but I feel the bright eyes 

Of the beautiful Annabel Lee; 

And so, all the night-tide, I lie down by the side 

Of my darling—my darling—my life and my bride, 

In her sepulchre there by the sea— 

In her tomb by the sounding sea.

114. Farewell My Friends

by Rabindranath Tagore

Farewell My Friends

It was beautiful

As long as it lasted

The journey of my life.

I have no regrets

Whatsoever said

The pain I’ll leave behind.

Those dear hearts

Who love and care…

And the strings pulling

At the heart and soul…

The strong arms

That held me up

When my own strength

Let me down.

At the turning of my life

I came across

Good friends,

Friends who stood by me

Even when time raced me by.

Farewell, farewell My friends

I smile and

Bid you goodbye.

No, shed no tears

For I need them not

All I need is your smile.

If you feel sad

Do think of me

For that’s what I’ll like

When you live in the hearts

Of those you love

Remember then

You never die.

115. If I Could

by Anonymous

If I could travel back in time

I’d travel to your side

Back to the day I said ‘I do’

And you made me your bride

I’d make my promises again

And wear the same gold ring

Then share another life with you

And wouldn’t change a thing

116. Love

by Czeslaw Milosz

Love means to learn to look at yourself

The way one looks at distant things

For you are only one thing among many.

And whoever sees that way heals his heart,

Without knowing it, from various ills

A bird and a tree say to him: Friend.

Then he wants to use himself and things

So that they stand in the glow of ripeness.

It doesn’t matter whether he knows what he serves:

Who serves best doesn’t always understand.

117. Your Grief For What You’ve Lost Holds A Mirror

by Rumi

Your grief for what you’ve lost holds a mirror

Up to where you’re bravely working.

Expecting the worst, you look and instead,

Here’s the joyful face you’ve been wanting to see.

Your hand opens and closes and opens and closes.

If it were always a fist or always stretched open,

You would be paralyzed.

Your deepest presence is in every small contracting and expanding

The two as beautifully balanced and coordinated

As bird wings.

118. Mother’s Love

by Anonymous

The greatest wonders man can build

Will all in time decay

But the wonder of a Mother’s love

Will never fade away 

119. Indian Prayer

by Anonymous

When I am dead

Cry for me a little

Think of me sometimes

But not too much. 

Think of me now and again

As I was in life

At some moments it‘s pleasant to recall

But not for long. 

Leave me in peace

And I shall leave you in peace

And while you live

Let your thoughts be with the living.

120. Remember Me

by Anonymous

Remember me as you pass by

As you are now so once was I

As I am now so will you be

Prepare yourself to follow me

121. May the Blessing of Light Be on You

by Anonymous

May the blessed sunlight shine on you

Like a great peat fire,

So that strangers and friends may come

And warm themselves at it. 

And may light shine out of the two eyes of you,

Like a candle set in the window of a house,

Bidding the wanderer come in out of the storm. 

And may the blessing of the rain be on you,

May it beat upon your Spirit

And wash it fair and clean,

And leave there a shining pool

Where the blue of Heaven shines,

And sometimes a star. 

And may the blessing of the earth be on you,

Soft under your feet as you pass along the roads,

Soft under you as you lie out on it,

Tired at the end of day;

And may it rest easy over you

When, at last, you lie out under it. 

May it rest so lightly over you

That your soul may be out

From under it quickly;

Up and off and on its way to Heaven. 

And now may Spirit bless you,

And bless you kindly.

122. Remember

by Christina Rossetti

Remember 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 no more day by day

You tell me of our future that you plann’d:

Only remember me; you understand

It will be late to counsel then or pray. 

Yet if you should forget me for a while

And afterwards remember, do not grieve:

For if the darkness and corruption leave

A vestige of the thoughts that once I had,

Better by far you should forget and smile

Than that you should remember and be sad.

123. All Is Well

by Oliver Wright

Death is nothing at all,

I have only slipped into the next room

I am I and you are you

Whatever we were to each other, that we are still.

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.

Play, smile, think of me, pray for me.

Let my name be ever the household word that it always was,

Let it be spoken without effect, without the trace of shadow on 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, for an interval, somewhere very near,

Just around the corner.

All is well.

124. The Bluebird

by Anonymous

The Bluebird of happiness sang high above

Bringing joy to a dark world of strife

Its soft wings protected and nurtured our love

And its song was the song of our life

Now the wonderful world where our Bluebird belonged

A sad silent world has become

As that beautiful bird finished singing his song

And the white Dove of God took you home

125. I Am Standing Upon The Seashore

by Henry Van Dyke

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.

126. Greenwood Cemetery

by Crammond Kennedy

How calm they sleep beneath the shade

Who once were weary of the strife,

And bent, like us, beneath the load

Of human life! 

The willow hangs with sheltering grace

And benediction o’er their sod,

And Nature, hushed, assures the soul

They rest in God. 

O weary hearts, what rest is here,

From all that curses yonder town!

So deep the peace, I almost long

To lay me down. 

For, oh, it will be blest to sleep,

Nor dream, nor move, that silent night,

Till wakened in immortal strength

And heavenly light!

127. Intimations of Immortality

by William Wordsworth

What though the radiance which was once so bright

Be now forever taken from my sight,

Though nothing can bring back the hour

Of splendour in the grass, of glory in the flower;

We will grieve not, rather find

Strength in what remains behind.

128. The Best And Most Beautiful Things In The World

by Helen Keller

The best and most beautiful

Things in the world cannot

Be seen or even touched.

They must be felt with the heart.

129. Hester

by Charles Lamb

When maidens such as Hester die

Their place ye may not well supply,

Though ye among a thousand try

With vain endeavour.

A month or more hath she been dead,

Yet cannot I by force be led

To think upon the wormy bed

And her together.

A springy motion in her gait,

A rising step, did indicate

Of pride and joy no common rate,

That flush’d her spirit:

I know not by what name beside

I shall it call: if ’twas not pride,

It was a joy to that allied,

She did inherit.

Her parents held the Quaker rule

Which doth the human feeling cool;

But she was train’d in Nature’s school;

Nature had blest her.

A waking eye, a prying mind;

A heart that stirs, is hard to bind;

A hawk’s keen sight ye cannot blind;

Ye could not Hester.

My sprightly neighbour! gone before

To that unknown and silent shore,

Shall we not meet, as heretofore

Some summer morning

When from thy cheerful eyes a ray

Hath struck a bliss upon the day,

A bliss that would not go away,

A sweet fore-warning?

130. All Things Will Die

by Alfred Tennyson

All Things will Die

Clearly the blue river chimes in its flowing

Under my eye;

Warmly and broadly the south winds are blowing

Over the sky.

One after another the white clouds are fleeting;

Every heart this May morning in joyance is beating

Full merrily;

Yet all things must die. 

The stream will cease to flow;

The wind will cease to blow;

The clouds will cease to fleet;

The heart will cease to beat;

For all things must die.

All things must die.

Spring will come never more.

O, vanity!

Death waits at the door.

See! our friends are all forsaking

The wine and the merrymaking.

We are call’d-we must go.

Laid low, very low,

In the dark we must lie. 

The merry glees are still;

The voice of the bird

Shall no more be heard,

Nor the wind on the hill.

O, misery!

Hark! death is calling

While I speak to ye,

The jaw is falling,

The red cheek paling,

The strong limbs failing;

Ice with the warm blood mixing;

The eyeballs fixing.

Nine times goes the passing bell:

Ye merry souls, farewell.

The old earth

Had a birth,

As all men know,

Long ago.

And the old earth must die.

So let the warm winds range,

And the blue wave beat the shore;

For even and morn

Ye will never see

Thro’ eternity.

All things were born.

Ye will come never more,

For all things must die.

131. There Is No Night Without A Dawning

by Helen Steiner Rice

No winter without a spring

And beyond the dark horizon

Our hearts will once more sing ….

For those who leave us for a while

Have only gone away

Out of a restless, care worn world

Into a brighter day

132. Life

by Francis Bacon

The World’s a bubble, and the Life of Man

 Less than a span:

 In his conception wretched, from the womb

 So to the tomb;

 Curst from his cradle, and brought up to years

 With cares and fears.

 Who then to frail mortality shall trust,

 But limns on water, or but writes in dust.

 Yet whilst with sorrow here we live opprest,

 What life is best?

 Courts are but only superficial schools

 To dandle fools:

 The rural parts are turn’d into a den

 Of savage men:

 And where’s a city from foul vice so free,

 But may be term’d the worst of all the three?

 Domestic cares afflict the husband’s bed,

 Or pains his head:

 Those that live single, take it for a curse,

 Or do things worse:

 Some would have children: those that have them, moan

 Or wish them gone:

 What is it, then, to have, or have no wife,

 But single thraldom, or a double strife?

 Our own affections still at home to please

 Is a disease:

 To cross the seas to any foreign soil,

 Peril and toil:

 Wars with their noise affright us; when they cease,

 We are worse in peace;–

 What then remains, but that we still should cry

 For being born, or, being born, to die 

133. Standing on the sea shore

by Bishop Brent

I am standing on the sea shore.

A Ship sails and spreads her white sails to the morning breeze

And starts for the ocean.

 

She is an object of beauty

And I stand watching her till at last

She fades on the horizon,

And someone at my side says,

“She is gone.”

Gone where?

Gone from my sight,

That is all.

 

She is just as large in the masts, hull and spars

As she was when I saw her,

And just as able to bear her load of living freight

To its destination.

 

The diminished size and total loss of sight

Is in me, not in her.

 

And just at the moment

When someone at my side says, “She is gone,”

There are others who are watching her coming,

And other voices take up a glad shout,

“There she comes,”

And that is dying.

134. Afternoon in February

by Henry Wadsworth

The day is ending,

The night is descending;

The marsh is frozen,

The river dead. 

Through clouds like ashes

The red sun flashes

On village windows

That glimmer red. 

The snow recommences;

The buried fences

Mark no longer

The road o’er the plain; 

While through the meadows,

Like fearful shadows,

Slowly passes

A funeral train. 

The bell is pealing,

And every feeling

Within me responds

To the dismal knell; 

Shadows are trailing,

My heart is bewailing

And tolling within

Like a funeral bell.

135. Fare Thee Well

by George Gordon

“Fare thee well! and if forever,

Still forever, fare _thee well_,

Even though unforgiving, never

‘Gainst thee shall my heart rebel. 

Yet, O, yet thyself deceive not;

Love may sink by slow decay,

But by sudden wrench, believe not,

Hearts can thus be torn away.

Still thine own its life retaineth,

Still must mine, though bleeding, beat,

And the undying thought which paineth,

Is, that we no more may meet.”

136. Never see the moon again

by Malcolm Boyle

If I should never see the moon again

Rising red gold across the harvest field,

Or feel the stinging of soft April rain

As the brown earth her hidden treasures yield. 

If I should never hear the thrushes wake

Long before the sunrise in the glittering dawn,

Or watch the huge Atlantic rollers break

Against the rugged cliffs in baffling scorn.

 

If I have said goodbye to stream and wood

To the wide ocean and green clad hill,

I know that he who made this world good

Has somewhere made a heaven better still.

 

This I bear witness with my last breath

Knowing the love of God

I fear not death.

137. Like As the Waves Make Towards the Pebbled Shore

by William Shakespeare

Like as the waves make towards the pebbled shore,

So do our minutes hasten to their end,

Each changing place with that which goes before,

In sequent toil all forwards do contend.

Nativity, once in the main of light,

Crawls to maturity, wherewith being crown‘d,

Crooked eclipses ‗gainst his glory fight,

And Time, that gave, doth now his gift confound.

Time doth transfix the flourish set on youth,

And delves the parallels in beauty‘s brow;

Feels on the rarities of nature‘s truth,

And nothing stands but for his scythe to mow.

And yet to times in hope my verse shall stand,

Praising thy worth, despite his cruel hand.

138. Celebrate

by Anonymous

Weep not for me though I am gone

Into that gentle night

Grieve if you will, but not for long

Upon my soul’s sweet flight

I am at peace, my soul’s at rest

There is no need for tears.

For with your love I was so blessed

For all those many years.

There is no pain, I suffer not,

The fear now all is gone.

Put now these things out of your thoughts

In your memory I live on.

Remember not my fight for breath

Remember not the strife

Please do not dwell upon my death,

But celebrate my life.

139. A Death-Bed

by James Aldrich

Her suffering ended with the day;

Yet lived she at its close,

And breathed the long, long night away,

In statue-like repose. 

But when the sun, in all his state,

Illumed the eastern skies,

She passed through glory’s morning-gate,

And walked in Paradise!

140. Time Does Not Bring Relief

by Edna St. Vincent

Time does not bring relief; you all have lied

Who told me time would ease me of my pain!

I miss him in the weeping of the rain;

I want him at the shrinking of the tide;

The old snows melt from every mountain-side,

And last year’s leaves are smoke in every lane;

But last year’s bitter loving must remain

Heaped on my heart, and my old thoughts abide.

There are a hundred places where I fear

To go – so with his memory they brim.

And entering with relief some quiet place

Where never fell his foot or shone his face

I say, ‘There is no memory of him here!’

And so stand stricken, so remembering him.

141. The Last Invocation

by Walt Whitman

At the last, tenderly,

From the walls of the powerful fortress‘d house,

From the clasp of the knitted locks, from the keep of the well-closed doors,

Let me be wafted.

Let me glide noiselessly forth;

With the key of softness unlock the locks – with a whisper,

Set ope the doors O soul.

Tenderly – be not impatient,

(Strong is your hold O mortal flesh,

Strong is your hold O love.)

142. The Triumph Of Death

by William Shakespeare

No longer mourn for me when I am dead

Than you shall hear the surly sullen bell

Give warning to the world, that I am fled

From this vile world, with vilest worms to dwell;

Nay, if you read this line, remember not

The hand that writ it; for I love you so,

That I in your sweet thoughts would be forgot

If thinking on me then should make you woe.

O if, I say, you look upon this verse

When I perhaps compounded am with clay

Do not so much as my poor name rehearse,

But let your love even with my life decay;

Lest the wise world should look into your moan,

And mock you with me after I am gone.

143. Elegy

by Byron

O snatch’d away in beauty’s bloom!

On thee shall press no ponderous tomb;

But on thy turf shall roses rear

Their leaves, the earliest of the year,

And the wild cypress wave in tender gloom:

And oft by yon blue gushing stream

Shall Sorrow lean her drooping head,

And feed deep thought with many a dream,

And lingering pause and lightly tread;

Fond wretch! as if her step disturb’d the dead!

Away! we know that tears are vain,

That Death nor heeds nor hears distress:

Will this unteach us to complain?

Or make one mourner weep the less?

And thou, who tell’st me to forget,

Thy looks are wan, thine eyes are wet.

144. God called you home

by Anonymous

God looked around his garden

And found an empty place,

He then looked down upon the earth

And saw your tired face.

He put his arms around you

And lifted you to rest.

God’s garden must be beautiful

He always takes the best.

He knew that you were suffering

He knew you were in pain.

He knew that you would never

Get well on earth again.

He saw the road was getting rough

And the hills were hard to climb.

So he closed your weary eyelids

And whispered, ‘Peace be Thine’.

It broke our hearts to lose you

But you didn’t go alone,

For part of us went with you

The day God called you home

145. No matter what

by Angie M Flores

There are times when you will upset me and cause me unwanted anger,

but no matter what, “I will always love you.”

There are cruel words you might say that will cause me hurt and bring me sadness,

but no matter what, “I will always love you.”

There are going to be unwise decisions you make that will disappoint me,

but no matter what, “I will always love you.”

There are actions you might act upon that will cause me to worry about you,

but no matter what, “I will always love you.”

There will be moments where you will make me cry and bring me to tears,

but no matter what, “I will always love you.”

There will be unforgivable mistakes that you bring upon me,

but no matter what, “I will always love you.”

There will be lies told to me in which you test my trust in you,

but no matter what, “I will always love you.”

In life there are struggles, arguments, and challenges we will have to endure,

but no matter what happens, I want you to know that, “I will always love you,” now and forevermore!

146. Turn again to life

by Mary Lee Hall

If I should die, and leave you here awhile

Be not like others sore undone, who keep

Long vigils by the silent dust and weep.

For my sake, turn again to life, and smile,

Nerving thy heart and trembling hand to do

Something to comfort weaker hearts than thine.

Complete these dear unfinished tasks of mine,

And I, perchance, may therein comfort you!

147. May the road rise up to meet you

by Mary Lee Hall

May the road rise up to meet you.

May the wind be always at your back.

May the sun shine warm upon your face;

the rains fall soft upon your fields

and until we meet again,

may God hold you in the palm of His hand.

148. Sunlight

by Mary Elizabeth Frye

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 glint on snow.

I am the sunlight on ripened grain.

I am the gentle autumn rain. 

When you wake in the morning hush,

I am the swift, uplifting rush

Of quiet birds in circling flight.

I am the soft starlight at night. 

Do not stand at my grave and weep.

I am not there, I do not sleep.

(Do not stand at my grave and cry.

I am not there, I did not die!)

149. Hell

(Parting is hell) (If I should go)

by Joyce Grenfell

If I should go before the rest of you

Break not a flower nor inscribe a stone

Nor when I’m 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.

7 Responses

  1. Thank you for putting this article together, a lot of information, and I’ve used some of the poems in my funeral planning. I was really looking to mention the topics of health , and I’ve been trying to recall a poem that mentioned ‘ death shall ‘ or something like that, ‘ death shall forever ‘ or death shall walk . I’ll email you as I need my funeral order of service designing, I can’t believe the pricing (in a good way).

  2. Can you suggest a poem, that has the following line in ‘ would want smile open ‘ ? A family member asked to reach out, I’ll send an email over too, see if you can help us with the selection .

  3. Great blog post, I’ve really benefitted from all the information. June my wife asked me to find a specific funeral poem, it has the line ‘ part of us ’ included. I’ll email you, can you reply with the funeral detail, she’s been really pleased with all your previous work and assistance, thanks in advance.

  4. I was looking for a more upbeat theme or themes, and I really liked some of the shorter poems you referenced so thank you for bringing this all together. Great selection . I have all the information together now for my funeral order of service, and I’ll place an order on your website now. Themes

  5. This has been really helpful, my brother and I have been planning our sisters funeral and this collection of poems was very helpful. I wondered if you had any information around funeral songs ? I’m bringing together the running order, and I wanted some suggestions on funeral songs I might like to use. I’ll email you too.

  6. Does this line call to mind a specific poem? ‘ restless care worn world ‘ ? My brother wanted to locate the full poem. Thanks in advance.

  7. I suffered a bereavement recently, and wanted to say how helpful I found this article about funeral poems . There are so many poems to choose from, and I appreciate this post just touches on a few of them, but it really helped narrow things down and make the right selection . I find a poem has a way of telling stories far better than I ever could. Thank you.

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