Friday Favourites: Poetry for a reflective mood

One of the things I love about blogging and Twitter is all the wonderful new people I have met.  There are new ones every day and I am delighted and honoured to have their company on this writing journey.

If you are a new blog follower, thank you so much, you’ve made my day with your interest and I promise, if I haven’t already visited your blog I will.  Now that there are more of you it takes a little longer to get around the traps but I’m trying to establish a system so that I don’t miss too much!

If you are a new Twitter follower and I haven’t acknowledged you, it’s probably because I’ve missed seeing you.  Talk to me and I will talk back!

I’m planning some changes around here over the next few weeks: nothing too dramatic, but I’m adding some new pages (I’ve already added one fo the #thankyouproject on Twitterr) and tweaking my schedule a bit so that I can share some more of my fiction work with you.  I hope you will like it.

But today I’m feeling a bit reflective.  Among my new Twitter friends, three (that I know of) have recently lost their mothers.  I lost my mother-in-law a few years ago and that was very hard.  I really do not want to think of the day I have to say goodbye to my own Mum.

There is nothing I can say that will ease that pain, but in honour of those Mums who have to leave, I wanted to share two of my favourite poems about death and loss.

The first is by Christina Rosetti.  I think it’s written more to a lover than a child, but the sentiment is one that I’m sure would be shared by Mums, or anyone who loves and has to leave.

It is called Remember

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 planned:
Only remember me; you understand
It will be too late to counsel then or pray.
Yet if you should forget me for a while
And afterward remember, do not grieve:
For if the darkness and corruption leave
A vestige of the thoughts that once I had,
Better by far that you should forget and smile
Than that you should remember and be sad.

The other is by the gloriously talented and very funny Joyce Grenfell .  I want this read at my funeral (just telling the universe for future – far future, I sincerely hope – reference).

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

This weekend, tell the people you love that you love them.  Take them flowers while they are there to enjoy them.  Celebrate life, while we have it.  As Joyce would say: Sing!

Love you all


5 thoughts on “Friday Favourites: Poetry for a reflective mood

  1. Imelda, I too do not want to think of the day when my mother will not be only a phone call away. My father passed away two years ago and I’m still grieving. In my own way. Some days are hell and others, all I do is chuckle as I remember his funny sayings. I’m a week away from leaving for Spain to spend the summer with my mother. I see her once a year and the older she gets, the more I want to see her. I think it’s important to spend time with loved ones while you still can, instead of mourning and crying when they’re gone. I loved the poems. I think the second one is very fitting for you, when your time comes, may that be a long way away! 🙂

    • I hope you have a wonderful summer, Bella!

      I’m glad you liked the poems. The second one was used at Joyce Grenfell’s own funeral, set to music and sung by the magnificent Cleo Laine. I wish I could have heard it!

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