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Your tombstone stands among the rest;
Neglected and alone.
The name and date are chiseled out
On polished, marbled stone.
It reaches out to all who care
It is too late to mourn.
You did not know that I exist
You died and I was born.
Yet each of us are cells of you
In flesh, in blood, in bone.
Our blood contracts and beats a pulse
Entirely not our own.
Dear Ancestor, the place you filled
One hundred years ago
Spreads out among the ones you left
Who would have loved you so.
I wonder if you lived and loved,
I wonder if you knew
That someday I would find this spot,
And come to visit you.

Written by:
Walter Butler Palmer


"To write a perfect genealogy, is beyond the power and skill of man. As his thoughts turn toward the misty ages of the past in search of ancestral knowledge, he soon finds himself like a wanderer over a trackless desert, utterly lost upon the wide domain on which he has entered, and as a mirage fades away and disappears before his wondering vision, so does much sought for data, elude his most faithful research."
Thomas Emmons, 1905

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