What is the grave to us, but a thin barrier dividing Time from Eternity, and Earth from Heaven?
What is it but “the appointed place of rendezvous, where all the travellers on life's journey meet” for a single night of repose?-
'T is but a night, a long and moonless night,
We make the Grave our Bed, and then are gone.
Know we not
The time draws on
When not a single spot of burial earth,
Whether on land, or in the spacious sea,
But must give up its long committed dust
Why then should we darken with systematic caution all the avenues to these repositories?
Why should we deposit the remains of our friends in loathsome vaults, or beneath the gloomy crypts and cells of our churches, where the human foot is never heard, save when the sickly taper lights some new guest to his appointed apartment, and “lets fill a supernumerary horror” on the passing procession?
Why should we measure out a narrow portion of earth for our graveyards in the midst of our cities, and heap the dead upon each other with a cold, calculating parsimony, disturbing their ashes, and wounding the sensibilities of the living?
Why should we expose our burying-grounds to the broad glare of day, to the unfeeling gaze of the idler, to the noisy press of business, to the discordant shouts of merriment, or to the balefil visitations of the dissolute?
Why should we bar up their approaches against real