Saturday, April 2, 2016

B is for Burial

My theme for this year's A- Z Blogfest is DEATH (who I really hope is like DEATH in Terry Pratchett's Discworld series): "An obvious sort of fellow: tall, thin (skeletal, as a matter of fact), and ALWAYS SPEAKS IN CAPITAL LETTERS. Generally shows up when you're dead, or just when he thinks you ought to be." Today we have B for Burial.



Burial is one way we take care of the dead (I'll bet you can guess what the letter C will be...). I rather like graveyards and find them very interesting to walk through, but I'm not sure I want to actually be buried. I don't care if I'm dead (well, I do...but I won't, if you know what I mean), but the thought of being stuck in a coffin under a bunch of earth creeps me out. I do like the idea of a marker, which is a nice thing about being buried. There you are forever remembered, or at least as long the headstone stands. On the other hand, if too many people keep getting buried, at some point we will run out of space, not to mention the environmental impact of burial. Just think of all the wood and metal that just gets buried, or all the formaldehyde that gets washed down the drain and into...?

So, I'm torn. I like graveyards, but I don't think I want to get put in one. How about you? Have you thought about what will happen to your body once you're gone?


Excerpt from Mort, by Terry Pratchett, in which DEATH takes on an apprentice...

Mort: But you're Death. You go around killing people!
DEATH (obviously offended): I? KILL? CERTAINLY NOT. PEOPLE GET KILLED, BUT THAT'S THEIR BUSINESS. I JUST TAKE OVER FROM THEN ON. AFTER ALL, IT'D BE A BLOODY STUPID WORLD IF PEOPLE GOT KILLED WITHOUT DYING, WOULDN'T IT?

14 comments:

  1. As a child, I often had nightmares about being buried alive. Horrifying thought. Great post! Thank you.

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  2. I don't care either way since I won't be here anymore, but my wife really wants us to be cremated so our remains will take up less space.

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    1. That's a nice idea, to take up less space. But if they would ditch the boxes, then at least we can go back into the Earth.

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  3. Like Nicola, I had/occasionally still have nightmares about being buried alive.

    Which may or may not have played a part in my desire to be cremated.

    I've never read Mort, but I'm loving these excerpts. I'm thinking I'll have to track down a copy.

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  4. I have wondered about this. Since my partner served in the military, we can get free burial, so that's probably what we'll do. Best wishes! - Darla M. Sands
    Awakening Dreams and Conquering Nightmares with a Pen

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  5. I love graveyards! I want to be cremated and my ashes scattered somewhere out in the ocean. Another great post and I am enjoying the excerpts!
    Have a great weekend!
    Lori

    My A2Zs @ As the Fates Would Have It & Promptly Written
    Follow Me (Ravyne) Twitter|Facebook

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  6. Kinda strange to think about the fact that most likely hundreds of feet below us are the bodies of people who lived thousands of years ago. Seems like cities form on top of old cities. Just look at Rome finding an entire city under the city.

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  7. I most certainly agree about the future of cemeteries. When we need the land will we do what they did in Paris - and create a Catacombs of the bones? I have already said in my will I'm to be cremated. I don't want to be buried, I'd rather go up in smoke - but after I'm dead of course. Markers or a spot for the urn can be in buildings, taking up less space than in our lands. However I did enjoy visiting Pere Lachaise in Paris and later learned that many are cremated there allowing more multiple burials for one family space. Interesting theme!

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  8. I am leaning strongly towards an eco funeral. No coffin. A shroud only so I can quickly feed the soil. And no marker, other than a tree.

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  9. I'm all for cremation. In fact, we were just having this discussion yesterday. My mother is near death and will be cremated when it happens, but we all find it comforting that we will be able to spread her ashes in a place that meant a lot to her in life.

    Interesting topic you picked. :)

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  10. Nope, not something I'd go for, the burial thing, pumped full of icky toxic chemicals, dressed up when I never dress up. It's cremation for me and ashes, don't care where they are discarded.

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  11. Nope, not something I'd go for, the burial thing, pumped full of icky toxic chemicals, dressed up when I never dress up. It's cremation for me and ashes, don't care where they are discarded.

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  12. My favorite death character is Death from The Book Thief.
    There are so many stories of people who have been buried alive... *shudders*
    Happy A to Z'ing!
    Writer In Transit

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  13. I've also got the buried alive fear. Dreams of tree branches coming for me... *shudders*

    This is why I want to be cremated. Of course, that has its own environmental issues...

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