Funeral poems for a brother

Two brothers in a field at sunset

Credit: Kat Jayne/Pexels

It might not be easy to put your feelings into words after the death of a brother. Writing a fitting eulogy for them is always going to be difficult so looking for inspiration in other writers words might be an interesting place to start. We’ve collected some of our favourite funeral poems for a brother to help you choose the right words..

His Journey’s Just Begun by Ellen Brenneman

This positive funeral poem looks at the death of a sibling more as the beginning of a new adventure than the end of a life. It could be perfect for a religious funeral service but works well for non-religious, spiritually minded people as well.

Don’t think of him as gone away
his journey’s just begun,
life holds so many facets
this earth is only one.
Just think of him as resting
from the sorrows and the tears
in a place of warmth and comfort
where there are no days and years.
Think how he must be wishing
that we could know today
how nothing but our sadness
can really pass away.
And think of him as living
in the hearts of those he touched…
for nothing loved is ever lost
and he was loved so much.

Remember Me by Margaret Mead

A beautiful funeral poem written from the perspective of a loved one who has died. If you chose this poem you could imagine it was your brother, reciting it through you, to the people who came to pay their respects.

To the living, I am gone,
To the sorrowful, I will never return,
To the angry, I was cheated,
But to the happy, I am at peace,
And to the faithful, I have never left.

I cannot speak, but I can listen.
I cannot be seen, but I can be heard.
So as you stand upon a shore gazing at a beautiful sea,
As you look upon a flower and admire its simplicity,
Remember me.

Remember me in your heart:
Your thoughts, and your memories,
Of the times we loved,
The times we cried,
The times we fought,
The times we laughed.
For if you always think of me, I will never have gone.

He is Gone by David Harkins

This poem focuses on the life of a loved one, rather than the fact that they’re dead. It’s a beautiful way of bringing the attention back to the time which people may have spent with your brother.

You can shed tears that he is gone,
Or you can smile because he lived,
You can close your eyes and pray that he will come back,
Or you can open your eyes and see all that he has left.

Your heart can be empty because you can’t see him
Or you can be full of the love that you shared,
You can turn your back on tomorrow and live yesterday,
Or you can be happy for tomorrow because of yesterday.

You can remember him and only that he is gone
Or you can cherish his memory and let it live on,
You can cry and close your mind be empty and turn your back,
Or you can do what he would want: smile, open your eyes,
love and go on.

You’ve Just Walked On Ahead of Me by Joyce Grenfell

This is a thoughtful reflection on the emotions that can arise after such a profound loss. By focusing on how you process feelings after their death, it doesn’t come across too sombre and instead helps with looking forwards rather than back.

And I’ve got to understand
You must release the ones you love
And let go of their hand.
I try and cope the best I can
But I’m missing you so much
If I could only see you
And once more feel your touch.
Yes, you’ve just walked on ahead of me
Don’t worry I’ll be fine
But now and then I swear I feel
Your hand slip into mine.

My Brother

This poem perfectly puts into words the ups and downs of having a brother. It acknowledges the fact that you can’t choose them, but honours the bond between two people who’ve shared much of their life. It could be a poignant way to end to a eulogy.

As kids, we lived together
We fought, we laughed, we cried.
We did not always show the love,
that we both had inside.
We shared our dreams and plans,
and some secrets too.
All the memories we share,
Is what bonds me now to you.
We grew to find we have a love
that is very strong today.
It’s a love shared by our family,
that will never fade away.
You are my brother not by choice,
but by the nature of our birth
I could not have chosen a better one
you were the best on earth.

Some shorter readings

You might also be looking for something to inspire your funeral readings or looking for a shorter passage to add to a eulogy.

We’ve included some thoughtful quotes here that you can use. Often a few words can have the same impact as many.

When brothers agree, no fortress is so strong as their common life

  • Antisthenes

A sibling may be the keeper of one’s identity, the only person with the keys to one’s unfettered, more fundamental self

  • Marian Sandmaier

Because brothers don’t let each other wander in the dark alone

  • Jolene Perry

For more funeral verses and inspiration for your loved one’s service, browse our collection of funeral poems.