Memoirs of An Undertaker

Oh yes I do remember when we buried poor aunt Jean
She’d gone from a size 0 up to a size 14
That’s why we told the family we didn’t think it best
To bury her in her most favorite slinky cocktail dress
No amount of alterations really made for a clean line
As she hadn’t worn that dress since 1989
But they did not appreciate my well meant intervening
And so the word ‘viewing’ would take on a whole new meaning.

And remember that time when we picked up grandpa Ned
He died one night so peacefully right in his own bed
But I’m sure the family found our technique rather shoddy
Our laughable ineptness at attempts to move the body
I had him round the arms, Johnny had him round the knees
A coffee table in the way and an ill timed sneeze
Well let’s just put it this way, I never thought I’d say
You’re grandfather’s body is wedged in the stairway

And some stop and wonder how I work with these conditions
The eyes that sink, the mouths that gape, the bodily emissions
Amazed atΒ how it is that daily I don’t blow a gasket
With angry relatives who tussle right into the caskets
Dismembered body pieces, putty, wax and string it’s set
Until they can be propped up much like a marionette
Oh I must admit it isn’t easy to be me
But there’s something to be said about job security


84 thoughts on “Memoirs of An Undertaker

  1. What a splendid conversational type verse…astute matter of factness (not a word I know!). A bravo moment methinks. By the way it reminds me of the time I kept mum’s ashes in the garden shed for a year and a bit waiting for the old boy to snuff it whereupon I spread their ashes together…spooked the neighbours a bit though!

  2. Inevitable! We’ll all go through here. I love love this!!! Takes the creepiness out of it and replaces it with hilarity. Genius, Marissa! How does an undertaker dress? Maybe as a Halloween costume?

    • There was a time I may have considered it and thought it wouldn’t be so bad. My inspiration for this blog was an article written by a real life undertaker. After reading that article, I have done a 360. Absolutely no, no way. I would go running.

  3. Marissa, This was hilarious. Aunt Jean’s viewing required clearing the tears of laughter and Grandpa Ned wedged in the stairway was a visual worth waiting for. My day is done now. I needn’t go on. πŸ˜€

  4. Okay, Marissa you out did yourself with the fun expressions and great choices of rhymes. (shoddy/body, conditions/emissions) This is a perfect post for October with the decorations up so many places and ghoulish headstones as graces put up in front yards in middle America. Sometimes I just want to shriek but instead I just hum a haunting melody. . .

      • I shriek with laughter at your stories but sometimes at decorations, I shriek because they can be scary, Marissa! There is a guy who has an automated one where something pops up every year locally. . . spooky!!

      • Yes, I was just telling Mark B. about how a lot of the locals here work on movie sets and practically set up horror movie sets in their front gardens. It’s a lot of fun and sometimes truly terrifying for the kids!

  5. Part of me wants to laugh… part of me wants to say ewww…. part of me relates wat to much to this. I think I know what the problem is. I have too many parts.

  6. This made me laugh!
    I have to admit I enjoyed the show Six Feet Under and the stories of a friend of our family who owns a funeral home (the guy has such a great sense of humor! I think you need it to do this job) πŸ™‚

  7. Love your comical take on a rather serious subject Marissa. πŸ™‚ I wrote a ditty in response and can share it with you (I just have to find your email) if you wish.
    I just read your profile and am so impressed about your musical talent and your life as a singer et al in a rock n roll band. Would love to hear your music if you have it up on YouTube. I love music – all genres.

      • I like the name : Cheesebergens. Very clever! πŸ™‚ Although I said I like all types of music, I have to admit, I’m not familiar with ‘punk rock.’ Do you play other genres Marissa?
        You have a talented family .. you must be so proud of them. I’m emailing you the poem.

      • Thank you! Yes, loved, loved, loved the poem.
        Unfortunately, my musical playing style is somewhat limited to what falls under the rock n’ roll genre. The song I pasted here is a little more metal but nothing like classical or jazz or anything that quite likely would make me a better musician! Ha, ha!

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