A Respectful Distance

Much of this summer has been spent meandering in cemeteries near and far. When the weather is conducive to headstone photography, I enjoy walking along the rows of granite and stone to preserve what I can.

It may sound strange, but I often think of the names on each marker as part of a community. I get absorbed by the ethnicities and the ages and the epitaphs in each row of headstones.

My focus is on taking clear pictures of each marker. Most of the time I’m wondering about the lives lead by the people each marker represents.

Unless I notice activity nearby:


At which point I move a respectful distance from the family and friends who will be mourning the loss of their loved one.


And a part of me wonders how the new addition will be welcomed into the neighborhood.

2 thoughts on “A Respectful Distance

  1. Laura, I also like to meander in cemeteries (much to the dismay of some of my family), wondering about the persons who reside there and talking with them. I find it so sad that cemeteries today have such stringent rules about headstones/grave markers. The markers in the cemetery where my parents are buried have to be metal & flat in the ground, for ease of mowing, though it is up to family members to cut away the grass/weeds that grow over the markers. Also, very little information is placed on the marker: name, birth date or year, death date or year, and military service, if any. There really is no way today to get to “know” the person(s) who are buried there. Very sad statement of our “throwaway” society; gone and forgotten.
    Louise Hanson


    • Louise,

      Thanks so much for sharing your thoughts. I agree about those “uniform” markers that work for the cemetery but not so much for those of us who visit them.

      Gone and forgotten gets to me too. Our society’s attitude toward death is also reflected in bereavement time-off from work. Just sad.



      Liked by 1 person

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