Sunday, October 31, 2010

Indian-Summer Serenity

October 29, 2010
Pine View Cemetery

When the leaves fall, the whole earth is a cemetery
pleasant to walk in.
HDT, Autumn Leaves

It seemed like unseasonably warm weather would last through the entire month of October, until last week. Then on one cloudy cold day, for a few moments, a brief flurry of snow-pellets came drifting down from the sky. After a few frosty mornings, the warm weather returned. In this unusually warm year, this may be the closest we come to an Indian Summer. Today, I walk in short-sleeves -- no coat, no hat.

Nearby is a cemetery with many great pines and spreading sugar-maples.
It’s especially beautiful at this time of year.

I went walking there the other day, just as an October fog was fading in the face of the morning sun. 
Just visiting ! 
Though literally, I don't know a soul in the place.

It’s interesting to see how people honor those who have passed on.

Some are somber memorials.

Others, lighthearted –- going back to happy times

Everywhere are symbols -- Christian - pre-Christian - and older still

And combinations thereof that can make you smile  
(Jesus with unidentified Apostle)

Some graves are monument-al

Some are simple

Some just break your heart to see them

There are parents

And children

Soldiers and peace-makers

Gone, all gone

But cemeteries are not only for the dead – they are a comfort to the living

A place to mourn and to celebrate –
A way to express our feelings
for those we hope to see again.

Again from Autumn Leaves:

How pleasant it is to walk over the beds
of these fresh, crisp and rustling leaves.
How beautifully they go to their graves !

They that soared so loftily,
how contentedly they return to dust again, and are laid low,
resigned to lie and decay at the foot of the tree,
and afford nourishment to new generations of their kinds,
as well as to flutter on high!

They teach us how to die.

One wonders if the time will ever come
when men, with their boasted faith in immortality,
will lie down as gracefully and as ripe, -
with such an Indian-summer serenity
will shed their bodies


  1. Very nice! I love cemeteries, their serene and somber beauty leavened by the whimsy of the objects left on the graves.

  2. Another lovely cemetary. Sadly the ones up here are often created with the ease of upkeep as the primary cue to design. Give me an old-fashioned cemetary any day!