In a Disused Graveyard

The living come with grassy tread
To read the gravestones on the hill;
The graveyard draws the living still,
But never anymore the dead.

The verses in it say and say:
“The ones who living come today
To read the stones and go away
Tomorrow dead will come to stay.”
So sure of death the marbles rhyme,
Yet can’t help marking all the time
How no one dead will seem to come.
What is it men are shrinking from?

It would be easy to be clever
And tell the stones: Men hate to die
And have stopped dying now forever.
I think they would believe the lie.

In a Disused Graveyard by Robert Frost
Photographs of the churchyard at St Patrick’s, Hill of Tara, County Meath.

7 comments on “In a Disused Graveyard

  1. toursirlande says:

    Nice poem . Better said in November.

  2. Sine nomine says:

    I enjoyed the highly atmospheric photographs which accompanied Frost’s prose. The solemn combination of an old Church, graves and mist tends to unnerve one. The irony is however, that although the Church of Ireland Church was decommissioned, the graveyard at Tara is not disused and still accommodates the occasional internment.

    • Indeed, I am aware of the slight disjunct between the words and the reality of that graveyard – but the misty atmosphere – and abundance of old tombstones – was too good to overlook…

    • Winnie says:

      Unnerving? Or casting a spell of enchantment??

      There is a curious vibration in this haunting beauty, like a lure….

      ‘The woods are lovely, dark and deep…’

  3. Sine nomine says:

    Perhaps for a future post you may quote Gray’s ‘Elegy in a Country Churchyard’ accompanied by some more cheery images?

  4. David Watchorn says:

    Grianghrafanna áille

  5. Elizabeth Printy says:

    I find this post to be serenely beautiful with the ballad accompaniment of poet Frost. But the photos also made me think of Emily Dickinson’s whisper “I died for beauty.”

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