Thursday, July 2, 2009

Feelings, Ideas, and Experiences of the Cemetery

I’ve always viewed cemeteries as places to be respected. It is a place to mourn those who’ve passed and recognize our mortality. Cemeteries are a journey through the past, from which everyone has either had some experience with or at least some connection. My most vivid experience of a cemetery, and as it is most often the case my first experience, was at the time my grandpa passed away. I was very young but still old enough to know this was a place of mourning, and after seeing my grandpa pass through poor health and age, I knew this would be his final rest place and my family’s final farewell to a man who once lived closely with us. It’s amazing to think that all we have left of our deceased are photos, a grave, and memories that can touch our heart softly but at the same time tear it apart. Funny little paradoxes like this seem to race through my head whenever I think of death and I think of the cemetery in the same sense. Graves are remarkable, because somewhere etched in stone is the name of my grandpa, Alfred Bernard, and somewhere else etched in stone is the Grave of someone I do not know – someone who lived years before me and even though I never knew them I can still see their grave to know they existed. There will even be people years from now who will see my grave after I die and will know I existed at one point. Though cemeteries can be emotional they can also be very fascinating. They are almost an index of people who lived and died in our society. Overall, I think a cemetery is a place that can be viewed in any way, just as long as it is respected. While spending these next nine weeks investigating the cemetery in society I will have no initial expectations and will be completely open-minded to what I may experience.

No comments:

Post a Comment