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The thought of writing funeral poems may never have crossed your mind, but it can an uplifting practice that will help you and your loved ones cope well with a great loss. Depending on what you read, especially if it is your own work, funeral poems can add color to the - needless to say - otherwise, dreary task of writing a eulogy. Here are some things to think about if you should decide to take on this touching, meaningful tradition.
If you decide to write your own funeral poems, you should consider, "What were some of the most consequential moments in my loved one's life?" Consider the circumstances in which he or she was born. Did he or she grow like a flower from dirt, out of poverty and into success? How about when he or she got married? How much did your loved one appreciate his or her spouse? Or maybe they were a great artist, who's works will forever remain a great reminder of thier talent and legacy. Expound upon that. What other moments of greatness in his or her days upon Earth? There is so much to say about a life, and you are sure to find much to say about your loved one's in your funeral poems.
If you decide not to choose your own work, you can find a handy resource in quoting funeral poems in Bartlett’s Familiar Quotations. It features quotations on virtually every area of life, and has many applicable funeral poems on death and dying, by a wide variety of authors over the course of centuries. Perhaps adding a modern cremation art memorial to the service can add a beautiful personal touch, and can even be tied into the selection of the poem.
With so many dull eulogies out there, think how funeral poems by, say Homer, Dante, Shakespeare, Robert Louis Stevenson or T.S. Eliot might serve as a much needed contrast. Your audience members, like anyone else, will be eager to hear a clever quote that will surely sit up in their seats. (If you do your job well, do not be surprised if audience members suddenly decide to use the quote themselves at a later point in time. Making memories like that is what funeral poems are all about.) If the funeral poems you quote are familiar to them, all the better. It will do even more to connect them with the fond memories of your loved one.
If there is an afterlife, your loved one will surely look from beyond the grave and appreciate your cleverness and the depth of your sincerity as you consider which funeral poems to use in memory of him or her.
Funeral poems can have the effect of complementing many of the hymns that will be played. This will certainly give you an added responsibility yes, but it will also have the ability to place a fresher picture on your audience member’s minds of what your loved one was really like. This will especially benefit those in attendance who never really knew your loved one, but came because he or she knew you or others who only met him/her on a few short occasions.
If you decide that you'd rather not venture writing your own funeral poems, you might consider paying a local writer in your area or you may be able to find someone to help you write it online. In any case, you have options when it comes to funeral poems. A funeral director may be of good assistance in this area.
If you do decide to write funeral poems, they need not be a laborious task. In fact, as you consider your loved one, and his or her life well lived, it could actually become enjoyable. You may find that you have gone through a transformation from beginning to end. First you were nervous about writing funeral poems, and then as you are filled with thoughts of pleasant memories, you simply cannot get enough of them.
So what do you do when it comes time to recite funeral poems? You may start feeling nervous, and that is natural. Turn that nervousness into energy. Also, since your poem is focused on the life of your loved one, your audience is likely to connect with it, even if it has no chance of an award.