Recently my wife observed rather sadly. ‘Nan’s birthday today. Just think, when I die there’ll be no one left who remembers that, and no one left who remembers her’. As her grandmother died fifty-five years ago, and had she lived would now be one hundred and twenty-six, it was hard to think of anything useful to say, but I did recite this poem to her. It didn’t help.
Here lies a most beautiful lady,
Light of step and heart was she;
I think she was the most beautiful lady
That ever was in the West Country.
But beauty vanishes, beauty passes;
However rare — rare it be;
And when I crumble, who will remember
This lady of the West Country?
Walter De La Mare