HEADSTONES are a rich source of information, inspiration, and at times, humour.
Given that it’s been a pretty stressful, not to say fraught, year so far, I share these with the hope they bring a smile to your face. Of course I have only seen one of these memorials myself so I can’t vouch for their veracity.
“Where’er ye be, let your wind blow free, Holding it in was the death of me.” It’s claimed this has several verses on the therapeutic benefits of free expression... or is it expulsion of methane?
Some years ago in my church a visiting speaker began his address with words from another:
“Erected by her sorrowing brothers, in memory of Martha Clay.
“Here lies one who lived for others. Now she has peace. And so have they.”
I’ve seen a photo of Harry Edsel Smith’s tombstone in Albany, New York. He was born in 1903 and died in 1942. It reads: “Looked up the elevator shaft to see if the car was on the way down. It was.”
In Stowe, Vermont there’s a memorial that has no name. The inscription explains why: “I was somebody. Who, is no business of yours.”
On the other hand, William Shakespeare is known almost universally. The inscription he wrote for his tomb is equally famous.
Since he is the master I have not dared change his spelling.
Good frend for Iesvs sake forbeare,
To digg the dvst encloased heare.
Bleste be ye man yt spares thes stones,
And cvrst be he yt moves my bones
The famous American evangelist Dr Billy Graham got in ahead of the game.
A popular magazine quotes him as saying: “One day you will read that Billy Graham is dead. Don’t believe a word of it. I will be more alive then than I have ever been. I will simply have changed my address.”