I happened to chance upon this poem a while ago when I was checking my email. Do Not Stand at My Grave and Weep is a poem largely considered to be written by Mary Elizabeth Frye (1904-2004), but of disputed origin. Of course the reason I am sharing this remarkable verse here is not to discuss who the original author is but to share with you the wisdom in the words.
It was said that Frye first wrote this poem in 1932 for a German Jewish friend, Margaret Schwarzkopf. Margaret Schwarzkopf had been worrying about her mother, who was ill in Germany. The rise of Anti-Semitism had made it unwise for her to join her mother. When her mother died, she told Mary Frye she had not had the chance to stand by her mother’s grave and weep.
Frye wrote the poem as part of her condolences. Like Frye who wrote this inspiring verse for her friend, I would like to share this remarkable verse with you and to the survivors of Myanmar’s (Burma) Cyclone and China’s Earthquake. May this poem inspires, consoles and strengthens their human spirits.
Do not stand at my grave and weep,
I am not there, I do not sleep.
I am in a thousand winds that blow,
I am the softly falling snow.
I am the gentle showers of rain,
I am the fields of ripening grain.
I am in the morning hush,
I am in the graceful rush
Of beautiful birds in circling flight,
I am the starshine of the night.
I am in the flowers that bloom,
I am in a quiet room.
I am in the birds that sing,
I am in each lovely thing.
Do not stand at my grave and cry,
I am not there. I do not die.
Photo credit: Ulrich Welzel