When I die


by: Christina Rossetti (1830-1894)

      HEN I am dead, my dearest,
Sing no sad songs for me;
Plant thou no roses at my head,
Nor shady cypress tree:
Be the green grass above me
With showers and dewdrops wet;
And if thou wilt, remember,
And if thou wilt, forget.
I shall not see the shadows,
I shall not feel the rain;
I shall not hear the nightingale
Sing on, as if in pain;
And dreaming through the twilight
That doth not rise nor set,
Haply I may remember,
And haply may forget.
Today in the ST, there was an article of a 6 star luxury columbarium opening in 2011. Fully aircon and carpeted, I thought, how nice! as I recalled the hot and humid columbarium which Mike’s sister now rest, the smell of plastic de-gassing evident from the many fake flowers on the niches, or worse, the basement storeroom rack in a temple where my grandpa’s ashes is now stored.
Then I remember, nice for who? The visitors or the dead?
On Saturday night, 罗大佑 sang one of my favourite songs, the one song that I have instructed Mike to follow upon my death, except that instead of burying me, he can just dispose of my ash in the sea after cremation (of which I was told by my friend that a license is needed as it constitute to polluting the sea).
《歌》 徐志摩翻译
We have argued about Qingming, as i said it’s hypocritical to only do that when one is dead. If you really cherish that person, treat him/her well when he is alive, not when dead. Also, why should we remember them on the day they died, instead of their birthday, or any other happy occasions?
It’s a Chinese tradition, Mike had sighed.
Well, don’t expect me to do that for you, and i don’t expect you to do anything for me upon my death either, I told him.
Earlier on, I had told him that if he really wants to keep my ash, then keep it by his bedside, and not in some niches. He shuddered and asked if I intend to haunt him. We laughed and I told him seriously to dump me at sea. That’s what i told the boys to do too.
假如你愿意请记着我 And if thou wilt, remember,
 要是你甘心忘了我      And if thou wilt, forget. 
我也许也许我还记得你 Haply I may remember,
 我也许把你忘记   And haply may forget.       

About vickychong

Just an ordinary woman.
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