Whether the deceased was a golfer, a fisherman, a bushman, a recluse, a doting mother, great gardener or craftsperson extraordinaire, your Funeral Celebrant will find the words to capture your loved one’s unique and individual flair.
Readings and poetry are an integral part of funerals and memorial services.
Funeral Celebrants are skilled in finding the right poetry and readings to reflect the life of your loved one.
Some Funeral Celebrants even write poetry!
Did they have a favourite book or author? Did they recite poetry? Did they have favourite sayings or a favourite song?
Share these with your Funeral Celebrant who may incorporate them in the funeral service as a true reflection of the person you are farewelling. (You may also like to include a favourite quote in the Order of Service booklet).
Sourcing readings and poetry
The internet provides an endless source of readings and poetry that you may like to include in a funeral service. Consider the person’s key traits you wish to portray and enter these in your preferred search engine.
Another great source is your local library.
Authors and copyright
It is most important to acknowledge the author of chosen works.
If you reproduce the work in a Funeral Booklet, ensure that you have permission and acknowledge the copyright owner. In the case of many older works which are anonymous or the author is unknown, it is acceptable to use such writings, but this should be acknowledged by use of the words Anonymous or Author unknown.
Shadows fall upon the world of my loved ones
They no longer see the dew upon the rose
The sun has slipped behind a darkened rain cloud
Their souls are clenched in pain as sorrow grows
From the surface of their minds they have set forth
Pursuing each daily chore with melancholy face
That yields no more, no less than asked
And yet, I long to reach right out and say aloud
Cry not for me my friends, hear the music in my heart
And kiss my memory- ‘Farewell’.
I have lived so well upon this earth
I have followed many paths to reach the sun
If I had troubles, or pain, or heartaches
I cherished more the smiles, a thousand more, when one
Had said to me in friendship – ‘I wish you well!’
They were sweet words I treasured long.
To the hilltops, to the clouds to the moon and stars beyond
To a pasture glistening with fresh rain – I run
So, cry not for me, my friends, hear the music in my heart
And kiss my memory ‘Farewell’.
Because of you,
I know what it means to love unconditionally.
Because of you,
I know what it means to give unselfishly.
Because of you,
I believe in magic and mystery and worlds unseen.
Because of you,
There is joy - wherever you are and have ever been.
And all because of you!
I’m Glad You are My Sister
By Judith L Sloan
When I say to someone
“She is my sister ….”
It is impossible to keep the warmth from my voice
Or the love from my eyes.
I not only admire you,
But like you as well;
We share a bond even more unbreakable than that of family ….
To have lived through the pains of growing up together and still be able to say these words is quite amazing.
Too many sisters cannot say them
But we are closer now than ever
And I want you to know that I am very, very glad you are my sister.
By Maggie Dent
Sometimes, on our journey through life
We meet people, who leave footprints on our mind
They challenge us to see things differently
And to question our personal reality.
Sometimes, on our journey through life
We meet people, who leave footprints on our heart
They create a safe place for us
To open our hearts to feel loved and special.
Then sometimes, on our journey through life
We meet people who leave footprints on our souls
They share themselves with us so profoundly
That they touch the very essence of who we are
In that secret quiet place.
(Insert name) has left gentle footprints on the minds, hearts and souls of many here today
May we always remember
The beauty of her love, her kindness and
The sacred way she touched our lives.
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 my life is done.
Death is Nothing at All
By Canon Henry Scott-Holland
Death is nothing at all
I have only slipped away into the next room.
I am I, and you are you.
Whatever we were to each other,
That we 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 jokes we enjoyed together.
Let my name be ever the household word that it always was,
Let it be spoken without effect, without a 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.
Don't Cry For Me
By Carol Pool
Don't cry for me now that I'm not here
I've just gone beyond to somewhere quite near
My troubled soul now freed from pain
Has now returned from whence it came
I've taken now't with me, nothing new, nothing old
But the love you gave me and the memories I hold
Those are the things that mattered to me
But I was blind - I could not see
So stretch out your hand, help another in strife
And something worthwhile, will be gained from my life!
Family – What comfort the word implies
Family by blood, by obligation, by necessity
By desire, and sometimes when one is very lucky – by Love.
It is a word that implies solidity.
A rock, solid foundation
A place to go home to – to grow away from
And yet, remember and hang onto.
The memories like painted Ivory from a single tusk
And softer ones faded sometimes so dim as to be almost forgotten
And yet, never to be ignored or left behind.
The place one begins, and hopes to end...
The thing one works hard to build on one’s own...
The pieces like building blocks, reaching high into the sky...
Family... what images that conjures...
What memories .... beautiful memories... What dreams!!
Miss Me – But Let Me Go
When I come to the end of the road
And the sun has set for me
I want no rites in a gloom-filled room
Why cry for a soul set free.
Miss me a little, but not too long
And not with your head bowed low,
Remember the love that we once shared.
Miss me – but let me go.
For this is a journey that we all must take
And each must go alone.
It’s all part of the Master’s plan,
A step on the road to home.
When you are lonely and sick of heart,
Go to the friends we know
And bury your sorrows in doing good deeds,
Miss me – but let me go.
When Life comes to an end, when all seasons are spent...
When death comes and claims its right, to say to me “This is the End!”
I want to step through that door, full of curiosity, wondering
What is it going to be like … that unknown realm of obscurity?
I will then look upon the past, as no more than an idea – a fleeting span,
That started some yesterday and raced through years concealed.
When it’s over, I want to say – Yes, that was Me!!
I had gazed around with ‘amazement’, searching for answers
I lived, I breathed, I felt and touched ... I followed many a dream!
And, when it’s over, I don’t want to wonder if I made my existence
Something particular, something unreal or something notable...
I don’t want to leave ashamed or frightened, imploring ‘one more day’!
To rectify some worthless deed...
I don’t want to end up simply having visited this terrain and failed.
I want to leave – having stained it with my struggles, a palette of varied hues,
I shared, simply or expansively, wildly or silently, with payments and dues,
Life’s complexities and triumphs hand in hand
As I did exist - from birth till now! And, it was ‘Grand’!!
Pages brushed elusively with music, tears and mirth
I hungered for the unknown, and sought what touched my soul...
And proudly leave it ‘Spectacular’, for having lived and loved upon this earth!
Buried With My Mobile Phone
By Michael Ashby – the funeralpoem.com
I want to be buried with my mobile phone
To ring in the changes at my new home
With central heating and a marble ensuite
And thermal sock for my poor cold feet
I’ll be able to give in to a takeaway
And watch favourite movies on a rainy day
And if I’m feeling a bit under the weather
I’ll talk to you until I begin to feel better
I’ve party hats, fairy cakes and songs to sing
In case somebody should drop in
Which is more likely than you’d think
As my coffin roof is on the blink.
I’ll be leaving you now as I’ve a waiting call
From my friend over by the cemetery wall
I watched this service yesterday through my periscope
Burying him with his mobile for a joke
But he’ll have the last laugh
When his bill drops through their door
Fourteen hundred and forty minutes a day for eternity and evermore.
A Long Cup Of Tea
By Michael Ashby - thefuneralpoem.com
Death is too negative for me
So I'll be popping off for a long cup of tea
Do splash out on two bags in the pot
And for my god's sake keep the water hot
Please pick the biggest mug you can find
Size really does matter at this time
I'll pass on the lapsang with that souchong
And that stuff with bergamot
And stick with my favourite friend
You know the English breakfast blend
Breakfast! thanks for reminding me
There's just time before I fail
To stand on ceremony
Two rashers of best back, Should keep me
Smelling sweet up the smokestack
So, mother, put the kettle on for me
It's time, mother, for my long cup of tea.
Because I fly
By Brian Shul
I laugh more than other men
I look up and see more than they I know how the clouds feel
What it’s like to have the blue in my lap
To look down on birds
To feel freedom
Who but I can slice between God’s billowed legs?
Who else has seen unclimbed peaks?
The rainbow’s secrets?
The real reason birds sing?
Because I fly, I envy no man on earth.
When I am Dead Cry for Me a Little
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.
God saw that you were weary ……
He knew you’d had your share.
He gently closed your tired eyes,
And took you in His care.
Away to the beautiful somewhere,
Sheltered from sorrow and pain.
You rest in Gods beautiful garden……..
Until we meet again.
God saw the road was getting rough,
The hill was hard to climb;
He gently closed those loving eyes
And whispered “Peace Be Thine.”
The weary hours, the days of pain,
The sleepless nights have passed;
The ever patient worn-out frame
Has found sweet rest at last.
God Saw that you were weary
So He did what He knows best.
He came and stood beside you,
And whispered, “Come and rest.”
You can shed tears that she/he has gone
Or you can smile because she/he has lived.
You can close your eyes and pray she/he will come back
Or you can open your eyes and see all that she/he has left you.
Your heart can be empty because you can’t see her/him
Or you can be full of the love that you have shared.
You can turn your back on tomorrow and live yesterday
Or you can be happy for tomorrow because of yesterday.
You can remember her/him and only that she/he has gone
Or you can cherish her/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/she would want you to do ……..
Smile, open your eyes, live and go on.
As Long As We Can Dream
As long as we can dream, as long as we can think
As long as we have memory
We will love you
As long as we have eyes to see and ears to hear and lips to speak
We will love you
As long as we have a heart to feel, a soul stirring within us,
And imagination to hold you
We will love you.
As long as there is time,
As long as there is love and as long as we have breath to speak your name
We will love you.
Today is a Gift
Many people will walk in and out of your life,
But only true friends will leave footprints in your heart
To handle yourself, use your head;
To handle others, use your heart.
Anger is only one letter short of danger.
If someone betrays you twice, it is your fault
Great minds discuss events;
Small minds discuss people.
He who loses money, loses much;
He who loses a friend, loses much more;
He who loses faith, loses all.
Beautiful old people are works of art.
Learn from the mistakes of others
You can’t live long enough to make them all yourself.
Friends, you and me … you brought another friend … and we started our group … our circle of friends … and like a circle … there is no beginning or end …
Yesterday is history.
Tomorrow is mystery.
Today is a gift.
I need to leave, no anguish, no trace of being
Of having unreservedly experienced and loved
I must not tarry, nor linger for the final scene
As I was never `comfy’ with any saddened word
I need to fly this land,
Leave no imprint on sand
As silently as a whisper, without sign – unheard.
Turn pages in an Album – if you must
Remember with a smile, but leave no frame
As comprehension of the `once that was’
Would unsuspectingly – freely gather dust
Do not fear for me, for I have severed earthly ties
I cannot change or trick the mechanism
Nor ponder on the contrite `might have been’
As I – just I, perceived what lay before my eyes.
Wrong or Right – I was my `jury’ it would seem
No feigned regret or impassioned woe implore
It’s time to leave – I now entreat you please
Say `Farewell’ and softly close the door!
Lines of Comfort
Bless you for all your kindliness, for all you’ve done for me,
For little courtesies of heart
With no one near to see.
For moments when without your smile I would have lost my way,
For these and all the other things, bless you, my dear/family/friends, I say.
Bless you for all the nights of prayer and watch when I was ill,
When faith shines like a steady light
In long dark hours and still.
And bless you for your morning smile when dawn breaks clear at last.
Oh bless you, dear, stay in my heart, where I will hold you fast.
Best Friends Are Forever!
I sit alone thinking of you
And all the things we've both been through
You are my soul mate, my very best friend
And I know you'll be there until the end
Although we’re going separate ways
you're in my heart till my final days
Nothing can make a person see
How special a friend you are to me.
We've been together through good and bad
You made me laugh when I was sad
And no one else could ever be
As good of a friend as you are to me.
The Clock Of Life
By Robert H Smith
The clock of life is wound but once,
And no one has the power
To tell just where the hands will stop
At late, or early hour.
To lose one's wealth is sad indeed,
To lose one's health is more
To lose one's soul is such a loss
As no one can restore.
The present only is our own
To seek to do God’s will,
Tomorrow holds no promise,
For The clock may then be still.
Memories and Peace
By Gloria Matthew
Why smile in such sadness?
It’s because of the memories, of laughter, shared in the past.
The humour of life,
The fun and the joy,
The reminiscences certain to last, Why relief in such sadness?
It’s because there is peace
With no more chance of pain No-one can hurt, nor take away
There will never be fear again.
Death is Nothing at all
Henry Scott Holland
I have slipped away into the next room…..
I am I… and you are you…
Whatever we were to each other, which we are still….
Call me by my old familiar name, speak to me in the easy way you always used
Put no difference into 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 ghost of a shadow on it.
Life means all that it ever meant it is the same it ever was;
There is absolute unbroken continuity.
What is this death but a negligible accident?
Why should I be out of mind because I am out of sight?
I am but waiting for you
For an interval somewhere very near, just around the corner
All is Well.
Memories Are A Treasure
Memories are a treasure time cannot take away,|
So may you all be surrounded by happy ones today.
May all the love and tenderness of golden years well spent,
Come back today to fill your hearts with beauty and content.
May you walk down memory lane and meet the one you love,
For while you cannot see her, she’ll be watching from above.
And if you trust your dreaming your faith will make it true,
And if you listen with your heart she’ll come and talk to you.
So, for her sake be happy and show her that her love
Has proven strong and big enough to reach down from above
You will never walk alone when memories door sways wide
For you will find that your (wife … relationship) is always at your side.
When Tomorrow Starts Without Me
David M Romano 1993
When tomorrow starts without me
And I'm not there to see
If the sun should rise and find your eyes
All filled with tears for me.
I wish so much you wouldn't cry
The way you do today
While thinking of the many things
We didn't get to say.
I know how much you love me
As much I love you
And each time that you think of me
I know you miss me too.
But when tomorrow starts without me
Please try to understand
That an Angel came and called my name
And took me by the hand.
And said my place was ready
In heaven far above
And that I'd have to leave behind
All those I dearly love.
So when tomorrow starts without me
Don't think we're far apart
For every time you think of me
I'm right there in your heart.
My hands were busy
My hands were busy through the day,
I didn’t have much time to play.
The little games you asked me to,
I didn’t have much time for you.
I’d wash your clothes; I’d sew and cook,
But when you’d bring your picture book,
And ask me, please, to share your fun,
I’d say, “Yes, later, little one”.
I’d tuck you in all safe at night,
and hear your prayers, turn out the light.
Then tip-toe softly to the door,
I wished I’d stayed a minute more.
For life is short and years rush past,
A little child grows up so fast.
No longer are they at your side,
Their precious secrets to confide.
The picture books are put away.
There are no children’s games to play.
No goodnight kiss, no prayers to hear,
That all belongs to yesteryear.
My hands once busy, now lie still
The days are long and hard to fill.
I wish I might go back and do
The little things you asked me to.
Around the corner
By Anders Lim
Around the corner I have a friend, in this great city that has no end:
yet days go by and weeks rush on
and before I know it a year has gone,
and I’ll never see my old friend’s face for life is swift and a terrible race.
He knows I like him just as well as in the days when I rang his bell
and he rang mine, we were younger then,
and now we are busy, tired men- tired with playing a foolish game,
tired with trying to make a name.
“Tomorrow”, I say, I will call on Jim just to show that I’m thinking of him.
But tomorrow comes and tomorrow goes,
and the distance between us grows and grows.
Around the corner-yet miles away,
“Here’s a telegram, sir” “Jim died today’.”
And that’s what we get, and deserve in the end,
around the corner, a vanished friend.
The Man was a Success
adaptation Ralph Waldo Emerson
The man was a success, he has lived well, laughed often and loved much;
he has gained the respect of intelligent men and women and the love of children;
he has filled his niche and accomplished his task;
he leaves the world better than he found it,
he has never lacked appreciation for Earth’s beauty or failed to express it;
he looked for the best in others’ and gave the best he had.
Mothers Never Really Die
By Helen Steiner Rice
Death beckoned her with outstretched hands
And whispered softly of an unknown land
But she was not afraid to go
For though the path she did not know
She gently took death by the hand
And journeyed to the Promised Land
And there with steps so light and gay
She polishes the sun by day
And lights the stars that shine at night
And keeps the moonbeams silvery bright
For mothers never really die
They just keep house up in the sky
And in the heavenly home above
They wait to welcome
Those they love….
The Door That Never Closes
There's a door that never closes, though it opens one way
It's the door that leads to heaven at the end of life's long day.
It's the threshold of forever where the heart is always glad,
It's a respite for the weary and a comfort for the sad.
It's the door to peace and healing and the door to joy and grace
Where the Master greets each guest by name and with a warm embrace.
And the loved ones who pass through into the light that's shining there
Find a sweet and perfect home within our Father's loving care.
A single, perfect, scarlet rose
A single, perfect, scarlet rose its petals damp with dew,
Damp with nature's morning tears, as the tears we shed for you.
The dawning of each newborn day will bring a longing to our hearts.
A longing just to hear your voice that we miss now we're apart.
Now our rose has died but her memory we retain,
Her love for us will never die and in our hearts she will remain
I'd like the memory of me to be a happy one.
I'd like to leave an after glow 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.
Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow
You were in our midst - a loving, caring person.
A pillar; a rock; a devoted and adored friend.
Without our knowledge, you brought closure to your darkness.
How we wish we could have looked deep into your eyes and willed you to stay;
cemented your soul to ours; saved you from torment.
There is a void. Disbelief. An absence.
Gone from our lives, is what we cherished the most.
Empty, puzzled and bereft, we suffer our loss together.
Your burden of sadness has shifted to us.
We search for answers in the hope that by sharing and understanding, we can somehow retrospectively lessen your anguish.
Rest now, released from your pain.
We will trudge on carefully and slowly, negotiating a safe route through an unknown path.
We will try to let go of our anger, and any regrets; we will try not to lose our way.
We will accept what we cannot change. We will be calm.
We will hope for happiness.
We will remember you, with love.
Don’t remember me with sadness
Don't remember me with sadness
Don't remember me with tears
Remember me with the laughter
We shared throughout the years
Then when the summer's sunshine
Awakes the flowers in bloom
I will walk that light from heaven
Around the corners of every room.
Do the things we did before
The same in every way
Just whisper a little prayer to me
At the dawn of every day.
Just think of me as present
Don't think of me as past
For a friend’s love is a blessing
In death it still can last.
Forget your troubles and your worries
They are mine forever more
I will watch, care for and love you
From heavens open door
And when your road gets rough and rocky
Or you are down and need a crutch
Remember I am right beside you
And love you all so much.
Tender and light is the touch
Of time upon the wound of grief…
Gentle the pressure of the years
That bring the heart relief.
Time from our memories draws the sting –
Thus we forget the pain
Only the sweetest recollections of the past remain.
Dark turns to dawn and sight to songs,
Harsh notes to harmony….
Death leads to life and
Love lives on through all eternity.
If I Be The First Of Us To Die
If I be the first of us to die, let grief not blacken your sky.
Be bold yet modest in your grieving.
There is a change but not a leaving,
For just as death is part of life,
The dead live on forever in the living.
And all the gathered riches of our journey,
The moments shared, the mysteries explored,
The steady layering of intimacy stored,
The things that made us laugh or weep or sing,
The joy of the first unfurling of the spring.
The wordless language of look and touch, the knowing.
Each giving and each taking, these are not flowers that fade,
Nor trees that fall and crumble, nor are they stone,
For even stone cannot the wind and rain withstand
And, mighty mountain peaks in time reduce to sand.
What we were, we are. What we had, we have.
A conjoined past imperishably present.
So when you walk where we once walked together,
And scan in vain for my shadow,
Or pause where we always did
Upon the hill to gaze across the land,
And spotting something reach by habit for my hand,
And finding none, feel sorrow start to steal upon you.
Be still, close your eyes. Breathe.
Listen for my footfall in your heart,
I am not gone but merely walking within you.
I leave myself to your memory, with love.
I leave my thought, my laughter,
my dreams; to you whom I have treasured.
I give you what no thief can steal, the memories of our times together,
the tender moments,
the success we have shared,
the hard times that brought us closer together
and the road we have walked side by side.
And all I take with me as I leave
is your love and the millions of memories
of all that we have shared
so I truly enter my new life as a millionaire.
Fear not nor grieve at my departure
you whom I have loved so much for my roots and yours
are forever intertwined.
Give me a Quiet Corner
Give me a quiet corner and a little time to hear
The singing of the birds from dawn to dusk throughout the year
Give me a chance to think things out before it’s time to go
Give me a place where I can sit and see the sunset glow.
Give me a cottage far from all the bustle of the town
Give me a garden I can tend until the sun goes down
Give me the opportunity to see the seasons turn
Watching nature at work, there is so much to learn.
Give me a window with a view that’s beautiful to see
Give me the joy of gathering my fruit from bush and tree.
Give me good days and sleep-blessed nights
When I have closed the door and anyone can have the world
I’ll never ask for more.
Do Not Weep That I Have Gone
Do not weep that I have gone, But rejoice that I have been.
For I have known life, To its fullest measure.
I have felt pain and I have known pleasure.
Tears I have cried, in grief and in laughter.
I have known love and all that comes after.
I have tasted the salt and bitterness in tears.
I've walked in the rain when the day is done,
Felt soft summer breeze, the warmth of the sun.
I've sat by the sea and heard waves pound
Of the hand that is friendship
And its richness abound.
Yes I have known life and I will learn death,
So weep not for me that I have gone
But rejoice that I have been
And that I have known you.
An Airman’s Prayer
My God, this night I have to fly and ere I leave the ground.
I come with reverence to Thy throne where perfect peace is found.
I thank Thee for the life I’ve had, for home and all its love
I thank Thee for the faith I have that cometh from above
Come with me now into the air, be with me as I fly.
Guide Thou each move that I shall make way up there in the sky
And should it be my time to die, be with me at the end
Help me to die a Christian’s death, on Thee, God,
I depend Then as I leave this mortal frame, from human ties set free
Receive my soul, O God of love, I humbly come to thee.
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 left undone must stay that way I found that place at the close of day.
If my 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 you the sunshine of tomorrow.
My life’s been full, I savored much good friends, good times, a loved ones touch.
Perhaps my time seemed all too brief
Don’t lengthen it now with undue grief.
Lift up your heart and share with me
To Those Whom I Love And who love me
By Mary Ramish
When I am gone, release me, let me go
I have so many things to see and do.
You must not tie yourself to me with tears,
Be happy that we had so many years.
I gave you my love, you can only guess
How much you gave me in happiness.
I thank you for the love you each have shown,
But now it is time I travelled on alone.
So grieve a while for me, if grieve you must
Then let your grief be comforted by trust.
It is only for a while that we must part
So bless the memories within your heart.
I will not be far away, for life goes on
So if you need me, call and I will come.
Though you cannot see or touch me, I will be near,
And if you listen with your heart, you will hear
All of my love around you soft and clear.
Then, when you must come this way alone,
I will greet you with a smile and a 'Welcome Home".
What is a Mother
By Helen Steiner Rice
It takes a mother’s love to make a house a home
A place to be remembered no matter where we roam
It takes a mother’s patience, to bring a child up right
And her courage and cheerfulness,
to make a dark day bright
It takes a mother’s thoughtfulness to mend the heart’s deep hurts
And her skill and her endurance, to mend little socks and shirts
It takes a mother’s kindness to forgive us when we err
To sympathise in trouble and bow her head in prayer
It takes a mother’s wisdom to recognise our needs
And to give us re-assurance by her loving words and deeds
It takes a mother’s endless faith, her confidence and trust
To guide us through the pitfalls of selfishness and lust
And that is why, in this entire world, there could not be another
Who could fulfil Gods purpose as completely
As a mother.
Your gentle face and patient smile with sadness we recall,
You had a kindly word for each and died beloved by all.
The voice is mute and stilled the heart that loved us well and true,
Ah, bitter was the trial to part from one as good as you.
You are not forgotten loved one
Nor will you ever be
as long as life and memory last we will remember thee.
We miss you now, our hearts are sore,
As time goes by we’ll miss you more,
Your loving smile, your gentle face,
No one can fill your vacant place.
A Letter from Heaven
By Ruth Ann Mahaffy
To my dearest family
Some things I'd like to say
First of all to let you know
That I arrived OK
I'm writing this from heaven
Where I dwell with God above
Where there are no more tears or sadness
There's just eternal love
Please do not be unhappy
Just because I'm out of sight
Remember that I'm with you
Every morning, noon and night.
And do not be afraid to cry
It does relieve the pain
Remember there would be no flowers
Unless there was some rain.
And to my very many friends,
Trust, God knows what is best
I'm still not far away from you
I'm just beyond the crest.
There are rocky roads ahead of you
And many hills to climb
But together we can do it
Taking one day at a time.
When you are walking down the street
And you've got me on your mind
I'm walking in your footsteps
Only half a step behind.
And when you feel that gentle breeze
Or the wind upon your face
That's me giving you a great big hug
Or just a soft embrace.
And when it's time for you to go
From that body to be free
Remember you're going
You are coming here to me.
By Kahlil Gibran
And a youth said, "Speak to us of Friendship." Your friend is your needs answered.
He is your field which you sow with love and reap with thanksgiving. And he is your board and your fireside.
For you come to him with your hunger, and you seek him for peace.
When your friend speaks his mind you fear not the "nay" in your own mind, nor do you withhold the "ay."
And when he is silent your heart ceases not to listen to his heart;
For without words, in friendship, all thoughts, all desires, all expectations are born and shared, with joy that is un-acclaimed.
When you part from your friend, you grieve not;
For that which you love most in him may be clearer in his absence, as the mountain to the climber is clearer from the plain.
And let there be no purpose in friendship save the deepening of the spirit.
For love that seeks aught but the disclosure of its own mystery is not love but a net cast forth: and only the unprofitable is caught.
And let your best be for your friend.
If he must know the ebb of your tide, let him know its flood also. For what is your friend that you should seek him with hours to kill? Seek him always with hours to live.
For it is his to fill your need, but not your emptiness.
And in the sweetness of friendship let there be laughter,
and sharing of pleasures.
For in the dew of little things the heart finds its morning and is refreshed.
“Mothers... "A Labor of Love".
Even in spite of all the "Joys of Motherhood" they have encountered,
it's still the greatest joy ever known.
There is a legend that says that since God could not be physically present amongst all of His people at all times,
He created Mothers to take His place.
Looking at the smile on the face of a Mother
as she looks at her baby explains it all very clearly.
As we age, we begin to realize the value of a mother's love and the enormous depth of her commitment to us.
No other relationship we form can ever be as close
or profound as that with our mothers.
Every human being carries with him or her the seal of "Maternal Love."
We always remember the maternal tenderness which is very hard to remove from the heart.
Even when we grow old, there remain the distant memories and the strong desire to see our Mothers once again.
Sadly, we have now lost her at the young age of seventy-five.
She will always live on in a very special part of our heart”.
Grandmothers Angel Wings
by Chris R. Slater
Like Angels radiant Wings, Is the Magical love,
That a Dear Grandmother Brings.
As the Sea that beats the Shore, Is the special care,
Given to us,
That will grow forever more.
Ever timeless, like a feather, falling gently,
Through the air, Is the love,
Of Our Dear Grandmother,
To which nothing can compare.
Memories of the Heart
Feel no guilt in laughter, He knows how much you care.
Feel no sorrow in a smile That he's not here to share.
You cannot grieve forever, He would not want you to,
He'd hope that you would carry on The way you always do.
So talk about the good times
And the ways you showed you cared.
The days you spent together,
All the happiness you shared.
Let the memories surround you,
A word someone may say
Will suddenly recapture
A time, an hour, a day.
That brings him back as clearly
As though he were still here,
And fills you with the feelings
That he is always near.
For if you keep those memories
You will never be apart
And he will live forever
Locked safe within your heart.
Memories of You
I remember everything about you,
your voice, your smile, your touch,
the way you walked, the way you talked,
the way you looked at me meant so much.
I remember all the words you said to me,
some funny, some kind, some wise,
all of the things you did for me,
I see now with different eyes.
I remember every moment we shared,
seems like only yesterday,
or maybe it was ages ago,
It’s really hard to say
I know that you have left me now,
but one thing they can’t take away,
your memory resides inside my heart,
and lights up my darkest days.
A wonderful Grandfather so loving and kind.
What beautiful memories you leave behind.
Sharing and caring and always content.
Loved and respected wherever you went.
A happy smile, a heart of gold.
You were the best this world could hold.
A special Grandfather so kind and true.
What wonderful memories we all have of you.
We want you to know that we loved you.
You were a very important part of our lives.
Our relationship, our memories and moments shared
And the love you’ve given us, are all so very precious to us.
We count our blessings to have had a Granddad like you,
And we hope that you realised that you have always been our inspiration.
You have guided us in each decision, and encouraged us to reach for every dream.
You have helped us through your guidance, wisdom, and the strength of your love
To become the person you wanted us to be.
We want you to know that though we may not have told you often enough
You mean so much more to us that words can say.
We thank you and we love you with all our hearts
You were the greatest Granddad of all.
I think about you every day,
The pain I feel won’t go away.
It’s the price I pay and always hold,
And unlike the stories I get told.
Time does nowt to help me heal,
Don’t plan to lose the way I feel.
Why would I try to just forget,
There’s not a second I regret.
The precious times we got to share,
Those memories forever there.
So I’ll think about you every day,
It’s the price and pain I have to pay.
But please don’t think that I don’t miss,
And what I’d give for one more kiss.
But I know, I’ll cease to grieve,
When it comes my time, for me to leave.
Until that time and who knows when,
I hope somehow, we’ll meet again.
All Is Well
By Canon Scott-Holland
Death is nothing at all,
I have only slipped away into the next room.
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.
Laugh as we always laughed at the little jokes we enjoyed together, Play, smile, think of me, pray for me,
Let my name be the household word that it always was
Let it be spoken without effort, life means all that it ever meant, It is the same as it ever was,
There is absolutely unbroken continuity.
Why should I be out of your mind because I am out of sight? I am but waiting for you, for an interval somewhere very near,
Just around the corner.
All is well, nothing is past, Nothing is lost.
One brief moment and all will be as it was before – only better, Infinitely happier and forever –
We will all be one together with Christ.
May I Go Now?
By Susan A. Jackson
May I go now?
Do you think the time is right?
May I say good-bye to pain filled days and endless lonely nights?
I’ve lived my life and done my best, an example tried to be.
So can I take that step beyond and set my spirit free?
I didn’t want to go at first, I fought with all my might.
But something seems to draw me now to a warm and loving light.
I want to go. I really do.
It’s difficult to stay.
But I will try as best I can to live just one more day.
To give you time to care for me and share your love and fears. I know you’re sad and afraid, because I see your tears.
I’ll not be far, I promise that, and hope you’ll always know
that my spirit will be close to you wherever you may go.
Thank you so for loving me. You know I love you, too.
That’s why it’s hard to say good-bye and end this life with you.
So hold me now just one more time and let me hear you say,
because you care so much for me, you’ll let me go today.
Chapter 3 Verses 1 – 8 New King James Version
To everything there is a season and a time for every purpose under heaven.
a time to be born and a time to die,
a time to plant and a time to pluck whatis planted.
a time to kill and a time to heal,
a time to breakdown and a time to build up.
a time to weep and a time to laugh
a time to mourn and a time to dance
a time to cast away stones and a time to gather stones,
a time to embrace and a time to refrain fromembracing.
a time to gain and a time to lose,
a time to keep and a time to throwaway.
a time to tear and a time to sew,
a time to keep silent and a time to speak
a time to love and a time to hate,
a time of war and a time of peace.
One Solitary Life
By Dr James Allan 1926
He was born in an obscure village, the child of a peasant woman.
He worked in a carpentry shop until he was thirty,
and then for three years He was an itinerant preacher.
When the tide of popular opinion turned against Him, His friends ran away.
He was turned over to His enemies.
He was tried and convicted.
He was nailed upon a cross between two thieves.
When He was dead, He was laid in a borrowed grave.
He never wrote a book. He never held an office.
He never owned a home. He never went to college.
He never travelled more than two hundred miles from the place where
He was born.
He never did one of the things, that usually accompanies greatness.
Yet all the armies that ever marched, and all the governments that ever sat,
and all the kings that have ever reigned,
have not affected life upon this earth as powerfully as has this
One Solitary Life.
Our emotions sometimes take control when we lose someone we love.
For when a person that we’ve cared about is called from up above,
There is an aching in our heart and many tears left to be cried,
but the tears we shed are for ourselves for the sadness we feel inside.
For you who has passed is not suffering; not in pain, nor full of sorrows,
just gone forward to a beautiful place
to spend all of your tomorrows.
We must realize about those we’ve loved as a relative or a friend
that although their earthly existence has now come to an end,
In time, we’ll meet with them once more and no reunion could be greater.
So for now insert name) we will not say “Goodbye...” we’ll just say “See you later!”
Sometimes - The "Footprints “poem
Sometimes on our journey through life
we meet people who leave footprints on our mind
-they challenge us to see things differently and to question our personal reality.
Sometimes on our journey through life
we meet people who leave footprints on our heart
they create a safe place for us
to open our hearts to feel loved and special
Then sometimes on our journey through life we meet people who leave
footprints on our souls
-they share themselves with us so profoundly that they touch the very essence of who we are in that secret quiet place
The deceased has left gentle footprints on the minds, hearts and souls of many here to-day.
May we always remember the beauty of her/his love, her/his kindness and the special way she/he touched our lives.
Footprints in the sand
One night I dreamed I was walking along the beach with the Lord.
Many scenes from my life flashed across the sky.
In each scene I noticed footprints in the sand.
Sometimes there were two sets of footprints;
other times there were one set of footprints.
This bothered me because I noticed that during the low periods of my life,
when I was suffering from anguish, sorrow or defeat,
I could see only one set of footprints.
So I said to the Lord, "You promised me Lord, that if I followed you,
you would walk with me always.
But I have noticed that during the most trying periods of my life
there have only been one set of footprints in the sand.
Why, when I needed you most, you have not been there for me?"
The Lord replied,
"The times when you have seen only one set of footprints in the sand,
is when I carried you”.
Don't grieve for me, for now I'm free I'm following the path God has laid you see.
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, to play.
Tasks left undone must stay that way I found that peace at the close of day.
If my parting has left a void
Then fill it with remembered joy.
A friendship shared, a laugh, a kiss
Oh yes, these things I too will miss.
Be not burdened with times of sorrow I wish you the sunshine of tomorrow.
My life's been full, I savored 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 peace to thee
God wanted me now; He set me free.
Gone From My Sight
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 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.
by John McCrae
In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place, and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.
We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow
Loved and were loved, and now we lie,
In Flanders fields
Take up our quarrels with the foe,
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch, be yours to hold it high If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow In Flanders fields
Gates of Prayer
As long as we live, they too will live;
For they are now a part of us:
As we remember them!
At the rising sun and at its going down we remember them.
At the blowing of the wind and in the chill of winter we remember them.
At the opening of the buds and in the rebirth of spring we remember them.
At the blueness of the skies and in the warmth of summer we remember them.
At the rustling of the leaves and in the beauty of the autumn
we remember them.
At the beginning of the year and when it ends we remember them.
As long as we live, they too will live, for they are now a part of us.
As we remember them.
When we are weary and in need of strength we remember them.
When we are lost and sick at heart we remember them.
When we have decisions that are difficult to make we remember them.
When we have joy we crave to share we remember them.
When we have achievements that are based on theirs we remember them.
For as long as we live, they too will live,
For they are now a part of us, as we remember them.
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 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 anyone.
Let Me Go
We've known lots of pleasure,
At times endured pain;
We've lived in the sunshine
And walked in the rain.
But now we're separated
And for a time apart,
But I am not alone-
You're forever in my heart.
Death always seems so sudden,
And it is always sure,
But what is oft' forgotten-
It is not without a cure.
I'm walking now with someone,
And I know He'll always stay,
I know He's walking with you too,
Giving comfort everyday.
There may be times you miss me,
I sort of hope you do,
But smile when you think of me,
For I'll be waiting for you.
Now there's many things for you to do,
And lots of ways to grow,
So get busy, be happy, and live your life,
Miss me, but let me go.
Poem of Life
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.
A Dog's Poem
Also known as Missing Youby Colleen Fitzsimmons
I stood by your bed last night, I came to have a peep.
I could see that you were crying, You found it hard to sleep.
I whined to you softly as you brushed away a tear,
"It's me, I haven't left you, I'm well, I'm fine, I'm here."
I was close to you at breakfast, I watched you pour the tea,
You were thinking of the many times, your hands reached down to me.
I was with you at the shops today, Your arms were getting sore.
I longed to take your parcels, I wish I could do more.
I was with you at my grave today, You tend it with such care.
I want to re-assure you, that I'm not lying there.
I walked with you towards the house, as you fumbled for your key.
I gently put my paw on you, I smiled and said " it's me."
You looked so very tired, and sank into a chair.
I tried so hard to let you know, that I was standing there.
It's possible for me, to be so near you everyday.
To say to you with certainty, "I never went away."
You sat there very quietly, then smiled, I think you knew...
In the stillness of that evening, I was very close to you.
The day is over... I smile and watch you yawning
and say "good-night, God bless, I'll see you in the morning."
And when the time is right for you to cross the brief divide,
I'll rush across to greet you and we'll stand, side by side.
I have so many things to show you, there is so much for you to see.
Be patient, live your journey out...then come home to be with me.
Adaptation - Anonymous
They say it's a beautiful journey
From the old world to the new
Some day we'll take that journey
Up the staircase that leads to you.
And when we reach that garden
Where all are free from pain,
We'll put our arms around you
And we'll never part again.
A golden heart stopped beating
Two hands were laid to rest
God broke our heart to prove
He only takes the best.
If tears could build a stairway
And memories build a lane
We would walk right up to heaven,
And bring you back again.
God looked around his garden
And found an empty space,
He then looked down upon the earth
And found a tired face.
He put his arms around you
And lifted you to rest,
The garden must be beautiful
Because, he only takes the best.
His journey’s just begun
Don’t think of him as gone away
His journey’s just begun,
Life holds so many facets
This earth is only one.
Just think of him as resting from the sorrow and the tears,
In a place of rest and comfort
Where there are no days or years.
Think how he must be wishing That we could know, today,
How nothing but our sadness
Can really pass away.
And think of him as living
In the hearts of those he touched,
For nothing loved is ever lost
And he was loved so much.
The time has come and now we part,
Thoughts of you so close to our heart,
The loss is like a burning pain.
We would give it all to see you again.
But no, you’re gone. In time we know
The pain will fade away,
The thoughts and memories will still be there
As in our heart you will always stay.
Traditional Gaelic Blessing
May the road rise to meet you,
May the wind always be at your back,
May the sunshine warm upon your face
And the rains fall soft upon your fields,
And until we meet again
May God hold you in the palm of his hand.
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.
Memories are not framed in gold
or hung for all to see,
they are held deep within our hearts
that’s where you will always be.
Since you have left us our lives are not the same
so walk with us throughout our lives until we meet again.
It was not the body you loved
it was the unique and precious spirit that dwelled within.
That spirit is still with you Spirit is eternal …
it does not die,
though unseen,......... walks besides you…. as before,
safe in the love you always knew.
Memories in the Heart
Feel no guilt in laughter; he knows how much you care
Feel no sorrow in a smile that he’s not here to share.
You cannot grieve forever; he would not want you to.
He’d hope that you can carry on, the way you always do.
So talk about the good times and the ways you showed you cared
The days you spent together, all the happiness you shared.
For if you keep these moments, you will never be apart
And Insert Name will live forever, locked safely in your heart