23 July 2009

Under the Covering of Earth and Stone: In Memoriam of Sarah Paris

Sarah C.
Wife of F. F. Paris
Died May 15, 1902
Safely Anchored In The Haven Of Eternal Rest

Hillcrest Cemetery; Reynolds, Taylor County, Georgia

Sarah was the wife of Fletcher F. Paris. Fletcher, a veteran of the Civil War, was the son of Dollie Lewis and Dr. J. R. Paris. When searching for an obituary for Sarah, I came across this touching tribute to her by Mrs. Chas. Hugh Neisler of Reynolds, Ga:

8 June 1902
Macon Weekly Telegraph, Georgia
Mrs. Fletcher F. Paris, Died May 15, 1902

Her memory is with us, fresh and sweet,
A flower to bloom within our hearts alway, --
Altho' the early path that knew her feet
Is dreary for her sake; and incomplete
Are all the days for sake of yesterday,

God knows, (who in His wisdom willed it so)
If it be best that we should walk alone --
Without the tenderness that used to flow
Unceasing from her heart, that now lies low
Under the covering of earth and stone.

And yet, not so -- the earth and marble lie
Above but dust returned to dust, while she
Lives on in that infinitude of sky
Above us arched in splendor, broad and high,
Where sun and stars watch o'er eternity,

So we should think of her as deified, --
For she was good as goodness, true as truth;
And even to the hapless day she died,
Flowers and children smiled her couch beside,
Sharing with her their sweetness and their youth.

Her hand was ever gently reached to save;
Her voice was ever given forth for good;
In suffering and sorrow she was brave;
And the unmatched example that she gave
Shines with the light of perfect womanhood.

Justice, it was her motto; love, her creed;
And even to the last hour, when she lay
Unnerved and weak, -- with heavenly love indeed,
She smiled upon us in our human need,
Then, left us thus, alone -- to wait and pray.

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