Tread Softly

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Religion and Spirituality  |  House: Booksie Classic

We all have our reasons for visiting the dead. I wrote this piece after I lost two younger brothers, my father, and a sister-in-law in a two year period.
It was not written with the intent to offend or upset anyone.

Tread softly here!
Walk silently beside the moss covered stones
where the ancient ones do sleep.
Pray do not shout or cry too loudly!
Here where the emerald giants eternally weep.
Behold the blossoms on the tombs
the scent of rotten fruit and long spent flowers.
Below the hard clay earth
lays the worm, which the flesh devours.

Have you come to mourn
the ones you lost to some disease?
Have you come to pay your respects
before your lifetime flees?
Have you come to pay that homage
or to taunt and to tease?
Have you come to relieve your guilt
or to once more try to please?

Tread softly here!
Those who rest there in the shadows
need not your intrusion.
Here the game of life has ended.
Here time is surreal only our own delusion.
They do not need your constant vigil
fueled by guilt or unfathomable shame.

Those, who call this home
no longer judge, no longer curse, no longer blame.
Have you come to gloat
and spit upon your neighbor’s grave?
Have you come to see if it still hurts;
are you really that brave?
Have you come to see if a visit
your weary heart will stave?
Have you come to pray,
bring those fresh flowers and wave?

Submitted: September 19, 2009

© Copyright 2021 Mistress of Word Play. All rights reserved.

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Add Your Comments:



I thought your poem was powerful and well written except the fourth line. Unless you meant that the flesh devours the worm and then maybe I am wrong. Other than that I thought it was pretty good. I am not into dark poetry so it is not my cup of tea but I felt your pain through your words. Giving you a like it vote. Take care and I hope your heart heals and you can come to terms with the fleeting nature of life.

Sat, September 19th, 2009 7:24pm


Thank you for reading and the help. Sometimes I don't see as clearly as I should when I type things.
I appreciate the words of encouragement and help.

Sat, September 19th, 2009 1:04pm


I found it forceful, clear writing. Was quite amazed by the ordered world which seemed to lie behind the author's writing. I only wish my own inner world were so ordered; I am the sort where I must hold my dead pets for hours because I keep thinking they might still have a spark of life and I"m terrified of burying them too early..even signs of death are not unmistakable to me. I will sometimes continue to see life when I cannot admit to myself that it has escaped
(thanks for your comments- still finding my way around here)

Wed, September 23rd, 2009 1:42am


Thank you so much. Believe it or not this was very hard for me to write. It came one day when I visited one of my loved ones at the cemetery. It is hard for me to let go also. I feel your pain.

Tue, September 22nd, 2009 6:53pm

Timeless Thoughts

You did this one perfectly. Loved it.

Sat, October 24th, 2009 7:13pm


Thanks sweetie. Susan

Sun, October 25th, 2009 11:18am

Graeme Montrose

Wow! Beautifully put. I enjoyed every minute

Mon, November 2nd, 2009 2:03pm


Hi my dear friend. Thanks for reading. I do appreciate it very much. Susan

Mon, November 2nd, 2009 6:32am

lily of the nile

Lovely! Lily

Tue, November 3rd, 2009 11:08pm


Thanks so much for reading and the comment. Susan

Tue, November 3rd, 2009 4:45pm


This was beautiful and wonderful. Definitely touching and eloquently written. I kept thinking, wow how graceful. I love the rhyming scheme and the sound of your rhyming scheme. It sounded like of those childhood fairy-tales that are carefully constructed.

Thu, November 12th, 2009 7:07am


Thanks so much for reading and the sweet comments. I never will believe I am that good. Susan :)

Thu, November 12th, 2009 6:35am


This is beautiful. To me it gives the reader a sense of serenity. Maybe its just me. But it brought back age old memories that I had almost forgotten. A time in my life, where I couldn't cope with anything or anyone. This seems like the very place I wanted to be, at one time in my life. Listen to me rant. I loved it!


Sun, November 22nd, 2009 3:42am


Thank you my friend. It was when I lost my father, two brothers, and sister in law all in under two years that I wrote this. I was visiting their graves and saw others with their loved ones that this one came. Strange that death can hold such power over a person. I do not fear death but rather welcome it in some ways. For I know there is goodness and peace in that place. I appreciate it. See how emotional it makes me as well. Bless you Susan :)

Sat, November 21st, 2009 8:04pm


I thought it was great, reminds me of LOTR stuff. All the "be quite" "ancient ones" stuff like that. You even put my name in it!! WOOT! Giving it an I LIKE IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Sun, November 22nd, 2009 9:07am


Thank you for reading and the great comment. You are right your name is in the poem. You got me on that one. Susan :)

Sun, November 22nd, 2009 8:23am

Brian W

A good poem about a subject not many write about and yes we all go for different reasons. Well written

Thu, November 26th, 2009 1:02am


Thank you Brian. I spend many hours there. I have most of my family there now. They need someone too. There is a peace in those places that I love and long for in the wee hours of the day. I appreciate the friendship. My next poem is for you. Susan :)

Wed, November 25th, 2009 5:48pm


I fell in love with this write. Beautiful so very beautiful.

Thu, December 3rd, 2009 2:01am


Thank you. I appreciate it very much. Susan :)

Thu, December 3rd, 2009 1:30pm


I think anyone that has lost someone dear to them can relate to this poem in some way or another. This is a very nice poem.

Tue, December 8th, 2009 4:33am


Thank you Maggie. I lost 4 people in less than 2 years. My Dad, 2 younger brothers, and a sister-in-law I treasured all passed away in that 2 years. It was hard I went through all the stages. I became someone else, darker if you will for that time. I appreciate it. Some writes are special, this is one of them. Susan :)

Mon, December 7th, 2009 8:52pm


So sad how we mourn and curse the dead. Well done my dear.

Wed, December 9th, 2009 5:34pm


True Myra that is what I saw that day at the cemetery. Some came to cry, some to curse, and some to laugh at the dead. Thank you for reading this and the sweet comment. Susan :)

Wed, December 9th, 2009 12:02pm


I am so sorry for your loss. Beautiful write. M

Tue, December 22nd, 2009 9:44pm


Thank you M I really appreciate it. Susan :)

Tue, December 22nd, 2009 6:11pm


Beautiful write Susan. I am so sorry for your loss. I know it hurts. Bless you.

Fri, January 1st, 2010 11:48pm


Thank you Gloria I am so glad you liked it. Bless you as well. Susan :)

Fri, January 1st, 2010 4:37pm

lily of the nile

I think you could almost write a short story from this poem. I know it would be wonderful if you did. Lily

Mon, January 4th, 2010 1:27pm


Hi Lily my dear friend. Thank you so much. Glad you liked it. I may just write something about it. Susan :)

Mon, January 4th, 2010 6:16am


Timeless write. Lyrical but not unless you look closely. Just a magnificent poem with the grace death deserves. Chad

Mon, January 18th, 2010 12:02am


Thank you dear friend it means a lot to me. Susan :)

Sun, January 17th, 2010 4:43pm


Just beautiful the reasons all vary but you wrote this so well. Loved it! Angie :)

Wed, January 27th, 2010 4:55pm


Thank you Angie. Mom :)

Wed, January 27th, 2010 10:11am

writing man

A beautiful write. So very true how we all feel about death. Nice job!

Thu, February 11th, 2010 3:57pm


Thank you so much. Gald you liked it. Susan :)

Thu, February 11th, 2010 9:53am


Again, Susan, I love it! You take pain, and you put words to it that I cannot describe! They are wonderful words that everyone can relate to. Words that express how everyone feels. Pain. I love it.

Thu, February 11th, 2010 7:54pm


Hi my friend and thank you so much. Glad you liked it! Susan :)

Thu, February 11th, 2010 4:05pm


A very different sort of write. Beautiful and well written. I enjoyed this very much.

Thu, February 18th, 2010 4:52pm


Thank you so very much. I really appreciate it. Susan :)

Thu, February 18th, 2010 10:14am

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