Make Me a Tree

Bury me. But bury me in roots.

I want a natural burial. I don’t want to be locked up in some non-biodegradable box filled with chemicals designed to keep my soulless being in tact long enough for people to stare at my lifeless body while they mourn.

I’m not morbid. And I know that this may seem odd. However, I find it very difficult to support the placement of headstones on miles and miles of land, taking up precious space that could be used for more positive purposes. Imagine how many parks, or shelters, or even just fields filled with wildlife could be in existence if cemeteries were not.

Here’s some facts for you:

Every year, this is what is buried alongside those who have passed:

  • 827,060 gallons of embalming fluid
  • 90,272 tons of steel (caskets)
  • 2,700 tons of copper and bronze (caskets)
  • 1,636,000 tons of reinforced concrete (vaults)
  • 14,000 tons of steel (vaults)
  • 30-plus million board feet of hardwoods (much tropical; caskets)

Source: Mary Woodsen, Greensprings Natural Cemetery FAQ, March, 2007; (found via http://www.beatree.com)

I don’t need a headstone and fake flowers to remind me of those who have left. I have my memories. I feel closer to my Granny when I smell a fresh chocolate pie coming out of the oven than I ever have by staring at a stone. I remember my sister’s best friend whenever I hear early 2000s pop music on the radio, not so much when I stare at the faded image of her marbled on a plaque on the ground.

The lives we live are beautiful. It just makes sense  to mark their endings with a similar delicate and natural symbol.

I came to be naturally, and I want to decompose in the same sense. This earth has given me an exceptional life, and I want to leave it the way I found it, hopefully even better.

What can I say? I’m DYING to do the right thing –give back to the earth that has given me so much.

Plus, I’m pretty sure that’s what they did with Grandmother Willow, and if it’s good enough for her, it’s good enough for me.

 

(future photo of me sizing up my grand-kid’s suitors)

Stay Classy,

SM

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