“I was not. I have been, I am not. I am so grateful to have participated in life!”

A beloved cousin died yesterday and we, at a Johnson/Smith/Denoo family get together had a discussion about what we want inscribed on our gravesite. I don't intend to have a gravesite, but will have a marker placed on my mother's grave. I want it to be clear that when I die, my mind, body and emotions change into a different form and return to the atoms from which I evolved. 

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Joan, sorry to hear about the death of your cousin. 

Like you, I will not have a gravesite,  It's my intention to give my full body to science to be used for research and education.  After my death, I would like to have a memorial party given in my honor which would include good food, good music and oral readings of meaningful and philosophical quotes and poetry.  What I leave behind will not be in stone but, hopefully, in pleasant memories. 

On Keats' grave:  "Here lies one whose name was writ in water"

It's funny, I thought his inscription went "My name is writ ON water". I like that better actually.  I like the idea of graven water.

Notwithstanding the following, I am sorry to hear about your cousin, Joan. My sympathy, and wishing you the best.

I think if I'm going to have a marker (no grave - will be cremated), and it is to truly reflect who I was, it would probably be some smart alec remark. I know at that time of reflection, it's supposed to be serious and philosophical, but I always try to see the humor in almost everything.

Probably something like,

"I Told You I Wasn't Feeling Well", or
"Now What?"
"In Loving Memory of What's His Name"
"He Lived Each Day As Though It Was His Last, Which Apparently It Was"
"Here Lies Pat. A Good Father and Good Man, But A Real Shitty Electrician"
"Sent a Tweet To His Wife, Meant for Leander, And Here He Now Lies, Six Feet Under"

I want to see "I told you I wasn't feeling well" in a graveyard!

Ya cracked me up with that one.

I've seen that one Luara.

Luara, I like "I told you I wasn't feeling well".

One of my favorite New Yorker cartoons is two women standing in front of a tombstone, one the wife of the departed. She says, "I told him it wouldn't kill him to be nice just once. I guess I was wrong."

Is it really accurate to say we evolved from atoms? Whatever, my epitaph shall read "six feet of graveyard is big enough for anyone".

Not exactly "evolved from" atoms.

This is what hydrogen atoms do, given 13.798±0.037 billion years of cosmic evolution.

OK, What is the term I should use to convey the idea that I came from slime? And that is OK with me. In fact, I kind of like the idea. All living things came from a common source. My skin is not worse or better than any other critter's skin. We are all part of a network of Indra's Net.

 

I like this image better to represent a connectedness in three dimensions. 

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