What’s a funeral?

Asked Lyra,

Is it very sad?


Said Mummy

But it isn’t just bad.

We share happy memories of the person who’s died;

Remembering those we love keeps them alive.


Replied Lyra,

I thought they were dead?

Well their body is Lyra – but they’re alive in our head.

As long as we can see them,

In our mind’s eye,

None of our wonderful friends have to die.

I see, said Lyra,

Thinking it through.

So their body is gone,

But they still stay with you.

[Based on a conversation with 3-year-old Lyra]

This entry was posted in Death, Family, Messages for my Children, Parent-Child, Parenting, Poems about Children and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

11 Responses to Remembering

  1. Mayfair Mum says:

    I love this poem. Had a similar conversation with my own three year old once upon a time. It has a happy rhythm to it, despite its slightly sad tone. Beautiful. Thank you.


    • PookyH says:

      Thank you – I’m often surprised by the depth of understanding that my kids have if I just stop assuming that they won’t… Our girls are three and we were unsure whether they should attend their great grandfather’s funeral. THere was much discussion but in the end we decided just to ask them if they wanted to come – hence this conversation. They are coming.


  2. dflorack says:

    Sweet. I can remember my son looking up at his Great Grandma at her calling hours (he was 3) and saying, “Grandma’s sleeping!”


  3. stitch this says:

    What a brilliant time. A really hard subject very elegantly put


  4. Beautifully written Pooky.I really love this. Xx


    • PookyH says:

      Thank you. That means a lot. Today was the funeral. I think folk must have thought me mad, Lyra was deeply inquisitive all day, when it got to the burial, once the service was done, I found myself kneeling with Lyra peering down into the deep hole at the coffin and answering lots and lots of questions.


      • Its the best way to be. I was over protected from death and it did me no favours. This isn’t a criticism of my parents; they did what they thought was best and I had a wonderful childhood. But it is an observation. Xxx


      • PookyH says:

        There’s lots of research that shows that experiencing a certain degree of difficulty is a positive factor in terms of developing children’s resilience – hopefully Lyra and Ellie learnt that when we go through a hard time, we can get through it with love, cuddles and talking etc. I hope so! (I teach teachers how to develop resilience. It can seem unlikely that experiencing hardship is good for you in any way!)


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