In Memory Of - Finding Poems For a
By Ben Anton
Planning a funeral service is no easy task, as people
are weary and uncertain during such an emotional time.
Finding ways in which to express thoughts and feelings
is difficult when there are no perfect words to say. A
funeral poem is a useful aid, as its words are
specifically intended to help mourn and honor a loved
one. Appropriate at a funeral, memorial, graveside
service, or wake, memorial poetry speaks to the heart.
In the Eulogy
Memorial poetry is a powerful medium of expression and
often communicates our thoughts and feelings better than
our own words. As such, using poetry in the eulogy can
be a most fulfilling and moving experience. While
writing a memory poem yourself is always a meaningful
endeavor, there are many memory poems available that can
accurately and appropriately express the particular
message you're trying to communicate-whether it be one
of sorrow, remembrance, or hope. A few examples of
appropriate funeral poems include: All Is Well by Henry
Scott Holland, Farewell by Emily Dickinson, No Longer
Mourn for Me by William Shakespeare, or Psalm 23: The
Lord is My Shepherd.
On Acknowledgment Cards
Often the best way to express your deepest gratitude for
those close friends and family members who stood by your
side during this difficult time is to send
acknowledgement cards. While, of course, a personally
written message is a meaningful gesture, it's also
common to include a poem. This poem can be a thank you,
a memorial poem pertaining to the loss of your loved
one, or a general poem about life and death. Whichever
you chose, using a poem graciously expresses your
sentiments for their love and support. Below is an
example of a general poem you might include:
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.
After someone passes away, friends and family often want
a consistent reminder of the wonderful influence and
life of their loved one. Since visiting a gravesite or
final resting place everyday is improbable, a small
token of the deceased's life is a meaningful and
practical solution. This is often achieved through an
inscription on a particular keepsake or memento. Whether
it's a custom figurine, plaque, or personal item of the
deceased's, an "in memory of" poem is a fitting
supplement. Since the lengths of inscriptions are
contingent upon the size of the object, the "in memory
of" poem you choose should reflect the space available.
The most suitable poems likely consist of short phrases
and few stanzas. A couplet or quatrain is most common,
for instance. The following is an untitled piece by
The season of mourning,
like spring, summer,
fall and winter,
will also pass.
Often friends, family, and colleagues of the departed
also appreciate a small keepsake or memento. A popular
and practical item is the memorial bookmark.
Consequently, the medium of a bookmark is conducive to
longer prose that expresses experience and feeling in
wonderful poetic detail. Despite whether your loved one
was an avid reader, a memorial bookmark will hold the
place of his of her memory for years to come.
~Ben Anton, 2009
In Memory of Poetry - Find the right poem for a funeral
service or share one of your own on the Memorial Poem