In Memoriam: Poems of Bereavement

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Introduced by the Poet Laureate, Carol Ann Duffy, this title offers a real alternative to a ‘With Sympathy’ card for people who have been recently bereaved.

Many extraordinary and important poems have been written about death and bereavement – the death of the old and the young, of a beloved parent, child, sibling, friend.

The poems in In Memoriam: Poems of Bereavement, a mix of traditional and contemporary, have been chosen for their clarity and beauty and in the hope that they might offer consolation to the bereaved and also be helpful for people arranging a funeral.

Shared in public or read in private, poetry can put its arms around us all. As Jackie Kay writes:

The dead don’t go till you do, loved ones.
The dead are still here holding our hands.

Illustrated by Lizzie Adcock

We will post with message of your choice to your intended recipient.


Christina Rossetti, ‘Remember’
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, ‘Wanderer’s Night-Song’
Alfred, Lord Tennyson, ‘Crossing the Bar’
Billy Collins, ‘The Dead’
Anna Wigley, ‘The Baton’
Carol Ann Duffy, ‘Cold’
Peter Porter, from ‘An Exequy’
Dylan Thomas, ‘And Death Shall Have No Dominion’
Paul Durcan, ‘Staring Out the Window Three Weeks After His Death’
Derek Mahon, ‘Everything is Going to Be All Right’
Traditional Irish, ‘The Parting Glass’
Mark Granier, ‘For Ever and Ever’
Adrian Mitchell, ‘Death Is Smaller Than I Thought’
Jackie Kay, ‘Darling’
Edna St. Vincent Millay, ‘Dirge without Music’
Wendy Cope, ‘My Funeral’
W. H. Auden, ‘Funeral Blues’
William Shakespeare, ‘Funeral Song from Cymbeline’
Penelope Shuttle, ‘The Scattering’
Michael Rosen, ‘don’t tell me that I mourn too much’
Robert Burns, ‘Epitaph on a Friend’
Gaius Valerius Catullus, ‘Ode to My Brother’
Lieutenant-Colonel John McCrae, ‘In Flanders Fields’
Laurence Binyon, from ‘For The Fallen’
Emily Dickinson, ‘Vanished’
Faith Lawrence, ‘Prayer’
Corinne Roosevelt Robinson, ‘Spring and Grief’
Thomas Gray, ‘Epitaph on a Child’
Sue Millard, ‘Pink’
Mark Twain, ‘Eulogy’


Christopher Reid, excerpt from ‘Lucinda’s Way’

Illustrated by Lizzie Adcock.

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