The 1st October is National Poetry Day, at first it feels as if there is no obvious link to a woodland burial ground.
However, while many of us may not read or hear much poetry in our daily lives, it is often part of a funeral service. Poetry can be a powerful way to express the big emotions of grief and love. Sometimes this will be via songs and hymns, and often by readings or a written poem in the Order of Service.
There are many well loved poems used at funerals, and several websites that offer ideas. Many people may have a favourite to share, or one used at a wedding or other special occasion during their life. A beautiful poem that speaks particularly to our Woodland is by Pam Ayers, and we’re sharing it to celebrate National Poetry Day.
Woodland Burial by Pam Ayres
Don’t lay me in some gloomy churchyard shaded by a wall
Where the dust of ancient bones has spread a dryness over all,
Lay me in some leafy loam where, sheltered from the cold
Little seeds investigate and tender leaves unfold.
There kindly and affectionately, plant a native tree
To grow resplendent before God and hold some part of me.
The roots will not disturb me as they went their peaceful way
To build the fine and bountiful, from closure and decay.
To seek their small requirements so that when their work is done
I’ll be tall and standing strongly in the beauty of the sun.