Peer Review by kaydenblue (Singapore)

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The Way We Mourn

By: Araw


During your lifetime,
You looked upon funerals with bitter disdain
You always thought that such mourning was fake
That temporary remembrance is arbitrary
Because eventually, there will be no one left to remember the dead
After all, what is the use of a hearse
When in a few years
No one will care that it drove down the street
Carrying someone who is lost forever
In a box that will never be seen again
What is the point in carefully worded eulogies
And meticulously written obituaries
When the emotions and memories imbedded into each letter
Are as fragile and easily blown away
As the petals of flowers scattered over gravestones
You always asked these questions
Resentfully, with a harsh sharpness in your voice
Trying to hide the unbearable dread and fear
That arose every time you considered
That one day someone would mourn for you in the same way
And so I sit here
By the stone that marks the spot in which you rest
Wishing that I had been strong enough not to dress in black
Not to pray for your safe passing into your new life
Not to sing my requiem to you
Not to realise your fears

Message to Readers

Republish because I'm bored

Peer Review

As someone who has unfortunately written far too many obituaries and been to far too many funerals, this poem really drives home. Personally, I've come to view funerals as less than a farce and more of cookie-cutter method offered to people who don't know how to mourn. This poem has moved me to re-examine that thought.

I think you've developed this well. The tone, language, and structure are crafted with meticulous care. I can tell you've put a lot of work into this.

Reviewer Comments

Given that the person the poem is addressed to disliked the traditions and standard structure of funerals, I think it's particularly poignant that all the verses are a uniform length. It's very bittersweet and really well done.