Mortality - Taken Lightly - and Thoughts About Your Own Service
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Okay, this is going to be cheerful! I just read a couple of articles on planning your own funeral or some kind of "I'm deceased" service. You could, too. You never know (actually, you do know) and it appeals to me.
The media part of it fascinates me.
Here is one book that I love and represents me burning away gas on the Grand Back Roads Wandering Tours; Blue Highways by William Least Heat-Moon. I've wandered back roads since the day I got my driver's license. This book is a must include.
Music; my classical fav, J S Bach's Goldberg Variations, first (the link actually isn't the first recording in 1955) recording by Glenn Gould. One of the British classical music mags ran a series of short interviews with classical music people that appeared on the last page called "Ten Recordings for a Desert Island," or something like that. This recording was named in probably 75% of the answers and I personally love his first recording. And, I heard him do it live in at old Orchestra Hall in Chicago around 1960. An epiphany!
For pop music, maybe Hot Rod Heart by John Fogerty (the swamp pop guy wasn't from Louisiana, he was from California). Music kinda fits with Blue Highways theme wise and I like the piece and the pace of it. Here I am in my intimidating, flame blasting hot rod (Note: This is a fib) for touring.
As for movies, and in keeping with the theme above, I lean toward American Graffiti. A classic "coming of age" movie and, more or less, the right era.
Well, that's as far as I have gotten in my thoughts so far. What about you and your after mortality act plans?
And a quick message from the sponsor: the 1982 Hymnal will blow away anybody unfamiliar with it. Quite aside from the good grey melodists and poets of the Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries, one finds poets like Christopher Smart, Richard Wilbur, and WH Auden, and a few tunesmiths named Palestrina, Purcell, Bach, Handel, Haydn, Beethoven, Parry, Holst, and Vaughan Williams. Under those circs, an Episcopal burial must considered a failure if the papers don't report that a good time was had by all. See you there!
I keep changing my mind about what I would like. At the moment the two pieces of music at the top of my list of "they should play this at my funeral" pieces are "Ich bin der Welt abhanden gekommen" from Mahler's Rückert-Lieder and Janaček's "On an overgrown path". Neither very cheerful, though.
It would be very tempting to ask for Britten's setting of Hardy's "Choirmaster's burial", as a way of injecting a touch of comedy. Twenty years ago I would have had Auden's "Funeral blues" on my list, but that's sadly been turned into a cliché by the films...
My husband recently passed away unexpectedly, and his one request in the music area had always been "Will the Circle be Unbroken." I didn't know until after the service, while talking with one of his sisters, that this had been sung by several hundred campers at a time around the fire at the church camp he went to growing up. Anyway, we have been members for a long time of a church that favors more formal music, and the solo was lovely but it's always interesting to hear a classically trained musician sing a folk song!
Funny example of funeral music -- I was in a store one day and overheard a conversation about a woman who had always given her dad a really hard time about his choice of music. As a way to make up for that, she had ZZ Top's "Sharp Dressed Man" played at the start of the funeral service. I expect she startled quite a few people with that one!
Last burial I went to I found myself wondering if someone was going to jump into the grave after we'd left and collect the rather nice brassware off the coffin - struck me as a terrible waste of resources.
yes, I know, this probably says more about me and the odd way I deal with loss than anything else.