Sunday, April 20, 2014

… all things return








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Why chidest thou the tardy Spring?
The hardy bunting does not chide;
The blackbirds make the maples ring
With social cheer and jubilee;
The redwing flutes his o-ka-lee,
The robins know the melting snow; 

The sparrow meek, prophetic-eyed,
Her nest beside the snow-drift weaves,
Secure the osier yet will hide 

Her callow brood in mantling leaves,
—And thou, by science all undone,
Why only must thy reason fail 

To see the southing of the sun? 
The world rolls round,—mistrust it not,—
Befalls again what once befell; 

All things return, both sphere and mote, 
And I shall hear my bluebird’s note, 
And dream the dream of Auburn dell.


–Ralph Waldo Emerson







consolation








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You now have sorrow;
but I shall see you again
and your heart shall rejoice
and your joy no one shall take from you.

Behold me:
I have had for a little time toil and torment,
and now have found great consolation.

I will console you,
as one is consoled by his mother.
 
 
 


 
.
 wait - what? 
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Saturday, April 19, 2014

The Dead








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The dead are always looking down on us, they say.

While we are putting on our shoes or making a sandwich,

they are looking down through the glass bottom boats of heaven

as they row themselves slowly through eternity.

They watch the tops of our heads moving below on earth,

and when we lie down in a field or on a couch,

drugged perhaps by the hum of a long afternoon,

they think we are looking back at them,

which makes them lift their oars and fall silent

and wait, like parents, for us to close our eyes.

 

–Billy Collins






 
 














Friday, April 18, 2014

Lie Still, Sleep Becalmed








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Lie still, sleep becalmed, sufferer with the wound
In the throat, burning and turning. All night afloat
On the silent sea we have heard the sound
That came from the wound wrapped in the salt sheet.

Under the mile off moon we trembled listening
To the sea sound flowing like blood from the loud wound
And when the salt sheet broke in a storm of singing
The voices of all the drowned swam on the wind.

Open a pathway through the slow sad sail,
Throw wide to the wind the gates of the wandering boat
For my voyage to begin to the end of my wound,
We heard the sea sound sing, we saw the salt sheet tell.
Lie still, sleep becalmed, hide the mouth in the throat,
Or we shall obey, and ride with you through the drowned.


–Dylan Thomas







 

Thursday, April 17, 2014

i feel like going home










i can float above the ceiling
i like drifting through the air
i tend to lose my concentration
but right now the clouds don’t appeal too much
i feel like going home
 


















Wednesday, April 16, 2014

There is more to death than funeral homes

  


Apr 13, 2014


Death educator Rochelle Martin compares a home funeral to a home birth, except there are no risks because the person is already dead.

In an afternoon workshop, she spoke about the resurgence in home-based, end-of-life care.

Loved ones are cared for in surroundings that are familiar to friends and family, lying in a place of honour for three days — usually, before they are transferred for a funeral service, burial or cremation.

"It's pretty intimidating to walk up to a coffin in a funeral parlour, just the anxiety — there is something about just having it happen naturally around you, for children and adults that makes it less scary," Martin said.

The registered nurse and certified end-of-life and home funeral care guide was at Homegrown Hamilton Sunday afternoon. The café was filled with about 30 people who came to learn more about after-death care.

She listed the benefits of being cared for in your own home rather than being whisked away and not seen again until the funeral. It allows for more visitation time and flexibility, creates a natural flow of events and emotions and can diminish fears about death and dying.

"It teaches kids about the life cycle and the reality of death, to embrace grief and loss as a part of life," Martin said.

It's non-invasive to the deceased, can be eco-friendly and it's a heck of a lot cheaper.

Martin broke down the cost of a basic, conventional funeral. After $2,295 for a metal casket, $250 for removal transfer and $1,817 for basic service fees among several other costs, a cheap funeral costs about $8,000.

With a home funeral, if you splurged on a cardboard coffin for $125 (the biggest cost), add $15 for the death certificate and another $15 for three sheets of Techni-Ice (dry ice packaged in a flexible polymer), you're looking at under $200.

"Saving the costs to me is important, I don't want people to inherit big bills," said Michel Proulx, 75.

Proulx always hated the cold and the idea of cremation appealed to him over being buried in a cold plot. But after Sunday's workshop, the financial details may have swayed him.

"I think the do-it-yourself has more dignity and respect, it's more personal," said retired palliative nurse Samantha Emmerson, who is considering a home funeral.

She already knew quite a bit about the topic, including the fact that it's legal in Canada, but wanted to know more.

The second half of the discussion was a demonstration in which Martin offered tips to make the experience easy and enjoyable, including how to transport the body, keep it cool, wash and present it for visitation.

"If you cared for a loved one before death, you can care for them after death — it's the same thing."



Stacey Escott 







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 thespec












Tuesday, April 15, 2014