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August 28, 2009

Poetry Friday--My Grave

I was a little surprised to hear that Ted Kennedy was going to be buried at Arlington National Cemetery. It's not that I didn't think he deserved the honor, he did, but to me a military cemetery is a cold, harsh place. Truly, I suspect the Senator would have preferred a grave in a place such as the one Ella Wheeler Wilcox wrote about in "My Grave."
If, when I die, I must be buried, let
No cemetery engulph me--no lone grot,
Where the great palpitating world comes not,
Save when, with heart bowed down and eyelids wet,
It pays its last sad melancholy debt
To some outjourneying pilgrim. May my lot
Be rather to lie in some much-used spot,
Where human life, with all its noise and fret,
Throbs on about me. Let the roll of wheels,
With all earth’s sounds of pleasure, commerce, love,
And rush of hurrying feet surge o’er my head.
Even in my grave I shall be one who feels
Close kinship with the pulsing world above;
And too deep silence would distress me, dead.

To continue to be connected to "the pulsing world" seems a more fitting end for a man who exuded amiability.

Today's Poetry Friday Round-Up is being held at Book Aunt, make sure to stop by!


  1. Yep. Ella's grave definitely seems a better place for Teddy.

    But I have to admit, when I saw the title "My Grave" I was thinking, why is she being so morbid and thinking about her own grave? I forgot it was poetry Friday and that you have a thing for cemeteries.

  2. Ah yes, I do have a thing for cemeteries.