Join the debate. Vote Now on the Dear Abby Poll of the week.

by Abigail Van Buren

Humorous Epitaphs Get the Last Laughs

DEAR ABBY: I have enjoyed your tombstone series. Isn't it great that humor can lift our spirits even when the subject is death and tombstones? It is a unique legacy and a wonderful way to remember those who go before us.

At a particularly frustrating time in my life, when I just wasn't getting something right, I wrote this poem. I'll bet others can identify with it, too:


"It has to be right, no less will do!"

She vowed and firmly believed it.

In life she aimed at perfection;

In death she finally achieved it.

They buried her corpse on a lonely hill

At the foot of a stone that read,

"May she rest in perfect peace,

"For now she is perfectly dead."


DEAR JOHNNYE JO: I'm pleased that penning the verse was therapeutic for what ailed you. Perfection is something most of us strive for, but few attain. Read on:

DEAR ABBY: I have another humorous epitaph to add to your collection of tombstone stories.

The reference made to the old cemetery in Key West, Fla., brought to mind another tombstone in that cemetery. It reads: "Now I know where he is every night."

People in Key West must have a great sense of humor! -- LORRAINE B., VICKSBURG, MISS.

DEAR LORRAINE: Yes, one that's out of this world. Read on:

DEAR ABBY: While you're on the subject of tombstones, I saw one in a cemetery near Breckenridge, Texas, that read: "Rest in Peace -- I Hope."

For my own monument, I would like "Rest in Pieces" inscribed. I have had so many operations in different towns that I could never gather all of me together in one grave. -- ADELLE O., APPLE VALLEY, CALIF.

DEAR ADELLE: Hold this thought: Sometimes less is more. Read on:

DEAR ABBY: The enclosed is a bit of doggerel I wrote while working on the wording of my last will. As a poet of modest publishing success, when I run into the inevitable roadblock, I resort to nonsense words that aren't meant to do anything or say anything:

In whom do I confide

When I finally decide

My Epitaph:

"By God -- he tried."

To the point, I think! -- HOWARD CANN, RENO, NEV.

DEAR HOWARD: I hope this isn't an indication of my mental state, but your epitaph makes perfect sense to me.