Many people use poems for a funeral service, memorial service and in funeral speeches. Funeral poems can add a special touch to eulogies and funeral programs.
If you’ve been asked to share a few words, it can really help to have a special poem to read. If you find a poem that reminds you of a departed loved one, chances are good that other will be comforted by the poem as well.
At the bottom of the page there are shorter poems if you need poems for funeral program or prayer cards.
Do Not Stand at My Grave and Weep
Do not stand at my grave and weep, I am not there, I do not sleep. I am a thousand winds that blow. I am the diamond glint on snow. I am the sunlight on ripened grain. I am the gentle autumn rain. When you wake in the morning hush, I am the swift, uplifting rush Of quiet birds in circling flight. I am the soft starlight at night. Do not stand at my grave and weep. I am not there, I do not sleep. (Do not stand at my grave and cry. I am not there, I did not die)
Death is Nothing
That we still are.
Call me by my old familiar name
Speak to me in the easy way which you always used
Wear no forced air of solemnity or sorrow.
Laugh as we always laughed at the little jokes
We enjoyed together.
Play, smile, think of me, pray for me,
Let my name be ever the household word that
It always was.
Let it be spoken without effort,
Without the trace of a shadow on it.
Life means all that it ever meant
It is the same as it ever was
There is absolutely unbroken continuity.
Why should I be out of mind because I am
Out of sight? I am but waiting for you
For an interval
Somewhere very near
Just around the corner.
All is well.
Canon Henry Scott Holland (1847-1918)
Remember me when I am gone away,
gone far away into the silent land;
When you can no more hold me by the hand,
nor I half turn to go, yet turning stay.
Remember me when no more day by day
you tell me of the future that you planned;
Only remember me; you understand
it will be late to counsel then or pray.
Yet, if you should forget me for a while
and afterwards, remember, do not grieve:
For if the darkness and corruption leave
a vestige of the thoughts that once I had,
better by far you should forget and smile
than that you should remember and be sad.
By Christina Rossetti.
Prayer of St. Francis of Assisi
Lord, make me an instrument of your peace.
Where this is hatred, let me sow love;
Where there is injury, pardon;
Where there is doubt, faith;
Where there is despair, hope;
Where there is darkness, light
And where there is sadness, joy.
O Divine Master,
grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled as to console;
to be understood as to understand;
to be loved as to love.
For it is in giving that we receive;
It is in pardoning that we are pardoned,
and it is in dying that we are born to eternal life.
-St. Francis of Assisi
Crossing the Bar
Sunset and evening star, And one clear call for me!
And may there be no moaning of the bar, When I put out to sea,
But such a tide as moving seems asleep, Too full for sound and foam,
When that which drew from out the boundless deep Turns again home.
Twilight and evening bell, And after that the dark!
And may there be no sadness or farewell, When I embark;
For tho’ from out our bourne of Time and Place The flood may bear me far,
I hope to see my Pilot face to face When I have crossed the bar.
Alfred, Lord Tennyson
Miss me, but let me go
When I come to the end of the road
And the sun has set for me
I want no rites in a gloom filled room
Why cry for a soul set free
Miss me a little – but not too long And not with your head bowed low Remember the love that we once shared Miss me – but let me go
For this is a journey that we must all take And each must go alone It’s all a part of the Master’s plan A step on the road to home
When you are lonely, and sick of heart Go to the friends we know And bury your sorrows in doing good deeds Miss me – but let me go
Poems for Funeral Program
A bit shorter, these poems work well on a funeral program or prayer cards.
You may also want to check out Sympathy Verses
Poem by Kahlil Gibran
When you are sorrowful
look into your heart
and you shall see that
you are weeping
for that which has been
Poem by T. Sachs
Love here on earth
Love beyond the grave
There are no roads
My love for you can’t pave.
Poem by Henry David Thoreau
Every blade in the field-
Every leaf in the forest-
Lays down its life in its season,
As beautifully as it was taken up.
This is a very popular and classic scripture for funeral services and readings. Some people may think that it is overdone. I tend to think that it is better in a funeral program where it can be read individually. It is one of those things that many of us have heard so many times that when we hear it read out loud we tune it out.
Psalm 23 – The Lord’s my Shepherd
The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.
He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters.
He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.
Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.
Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over.
Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever.
Another comforting scripture…actually one of my favorites. This one is lessor known. You can find more scriptures to use at Sympathy Bible Verses
I lift up my eyes to the hills.
From whence does my help come?
My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth.
He will not let your foot be moved,
He who keeps you will not slumber.
Behold, He who keeps Israel will neither slumber nor sleep.
The Lord is your keeper,
The Lord is your shade on your right hand.
The sun shall not smite you by day, nor the moon by night.
The Lord will keep you from all evil, He will keep your life.
The Lord will keep your going out and your coming in
From this time forth, and for evermore.