The Final Resting Place of Bulloo McGraw
The cemetery was set just outside the town on a large plot of land that formerly belonged to a rather grand house, now decaying at the far end of it. It still had a pretty rose garden attached and you could get a very good cream tea at the little café there.
Arthur had been the cemetery’s gardener for over thirty years. He found it a very peaceful job and not at all macabre like everyone thought. He liked the quiet of each day and the way his flowers were just left to grow, untrampled by scampish children, unplucked by lovers – the stillness and the beauty of the place respected.
This one was his favourite grave and he came to visit it often. It belonged to an old hippy he used to see knocking back whisky at the local, a colourful character who went by the name of Bulloo McGraw. His rather eccentric widow came every Sunday, wreathed in colourful scarves, to lay red roses in a peace sign. Arthur hated the way that by the following Friday the roses would have wilted to a lacklustre beige, melted to a slush if it had rained.
He liked this headstone in particular as most people went for rather boring ones these days. There was a huge trend for those very shiny black ones – which Arthur thought of as Las Vegas Does Death – or worse, those little cremation plaques where you could only really squeeze on the person’s name, with no decent inscription at all.
For these poor souls he would invent them:
Jonathan Fraser: 1923-2001
Spendthrift, birdwatcher and partial to toasted sandwiches.
Missed by his baker but not by his bank.
High-spirited can-can dancer and part-time accountant. Overly fond of absinthe and mourned by all ten of her husbands.
Arthur had always made it clear to his wife that he was not to lie under a virtually blank stone and had made her promise, years ago, that she would write him a fitting dedication if he popped his clogs first.
He stooped now to look at the white, polished stone. She’d done him proud.
Arthur Jacobs: 1936-2009
A restless soul who found peace here.
Eternally dedicated to these gardens.