Quotations about   bereavement

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My son, a perfect little boy of five years and three months, had ended his earthly life. You can never sympathize with me; you can never know how much of me such a young child can take away. A few weeks ago I accounted myself a very rich man, and now the poorest of all.

Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882) American essayist, lecturer, poet
Letter to Thomas Carlyle (28 Feb 1842)
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Added on 20-Mar-18 | Last updated 20-Mar-18
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For as much as I hate the cemetery, I’ve been grateful it’s here, too. I miss my wife. It’s easier to miss her at a cemetery, where she’s never been anything but dead, than to miss her in all the places where she was alive.

John Scalzi (b. 1969) American writer
Old Man’s War (2005)
Added on 23-Aug-16 | Last updated 23-Aug-16
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Bereavement is a universal and integral part of our experience of love. It follows marriage as normally as marriage follows courtship or as autumn follows summer.

C.S. Lewis (1898-1963) English writer and scholar [Clive Staples Lewis]
A Grief Observed (1961)
Added on 26-Aug-15 | Last updated 26-Aug-15
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Excess of grief for the deceased is madness; for it is an injury to the living, and the dead know it not.

Xenophon (c. 431-355 BC) Greek historian and essayist
(Attributed)
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In Anon. Mental Recreation Or, Select Maxims, Sayings And Observations Of Philosophers (1831).
Added on 19-Mar-15 | Last updated 19-Mar-15
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He first deceased; she for a little tried
To live without him: liked it not, and died.

Henry Wotton (1568-1639) English author, diplomat, politician
“Upon the Death of Sir Albertus Moreton’s Wife” (1651)
Added on 12-Mar-15 | Last updated 12-Mar-15
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I can’t think of a more wonderful thanksgiving for the life I have had than that everyone should be jolly at my funeral.

Lord Mountbatten (1900-1979) British statesman and naval officer (Louis Francis Albert Victor Nicholas Mountbatten, 1st Earl Mountbatten of Burma, b. Prince Louis of Battenberg)
(Attributed)
    (Source)

Quoted in Richard Hough, Mountbatten (1980).
Added on 5-Mar-15 | Last updated 5-Mar-15
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Time does not bring relief; you all have lied
Who told me time would ease me of my pain!
I miss him in the weeping of the rain;
I want him at the shrinking of the tide.
The old snows melt from every mountain-side,
And last year’s leaves are smoke in every lane;
But last year’s bitter loving must remain.

Edna St. Vincent Millay (1892-1950) American poet
“Time does not bring relief”
Added on 26-Feb-15 | Last updated 10-Nov-17
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A man’s dying is more the survivors’ affair than his own.

Thomas Mann (1875-1955) German writer, critic, philanthropist, Nobel laureate [Paul Thomas Mann]
The Magic Mountain (1924)
Added on 19-Feb-15 | Last updated 19-Feb-15
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The Bustle in a House
The Morning after Death
Is solemnest of industries
Enacted upon Earth —
The Sweeping up the Heart
And putting Love away
We shall not want to use again
Until Eternity.

Emily Dickinson (1830-1886) American poet
“The Bustle in a House” (c. 1866)
Added on 5-Feb-15 | Last updated 5-Feb-15
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Never does one feel oneself so utterly helpless as in trying to speak comfort for great bereavement. I will not try it. Time is the only comforter for the loss of a mother.

Jane Welsh Carlyle (1801-1866) Scottish letter-writer, wife of Thomas Carlyle [née Jane Baillie Welsh]
Letter to Thomas Carlyle (27 Dec 1853)
Added on 29-Jan-15 | Last updated 29-Jan-15
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He was my North, my South, my East and West,
My working week and my Sunday rest,
My noon, my midnight, my talk, my song;
I thought that love would last forever: I was wrong.

W. H. Auden (1907-1973) Anglo-American poet [Wystan Hugh Auden]
“Stop All the Clocks [Funeral Blues]” (1936)
Added on 20-Jan-10 | Last updated 2-Nov-17
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