Sunday, December 15, 2013

Cemeteries

One of the great pleasures of my job at the church in Sag Harbor is that my window overlooks the old cemetery. It's no longer an active cemetery, but a very old one where members of the church were buried for a couple hundred years. It is literally steps from my window, with a pretty white fence around it, and I can see the headstones as they rise on the hillside.

I love old cemeteries. I know many people are not crazy about them, but I enjoy walking around and reading the headstones. To me they tell a story - many stories really. Sometimes there are multiple wive beside a man's grave for instance, some very young and probably victims of childbirth as was common in days gone by. Sometimes there are small stones for children, often not even named. Older ones are sad - ten-year-olds, twelve-year-olds - and I wonder what tragedy befell the. Was if sickness or trauma? So many died so young before things like penicillin and inoculations.

Last week when the show was falling I looked out at the cemetery and smiled as the stones turned white and where the wind swept the flakes, leaving the back sides gray and beige. How any snowfalls have those stones seen? Many, for sure. Snow covers them all every winter, rendering their messages unreadable and blanketing the ground in white.

I love cemeteries.

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