Many people are inspired by the wisdom in the words of others – here are quotes by well-known identities, and the not-so-famous, whose thoughts can guide the way we view our own circumstances.

  • "When someone you love becomes a memory, the memory becomes a treasure." 
    Author unknown
  • "If tears could build a stairway,and memories a lane, I'd walk right up to Heaven and bring you home again."
    Author unknown
  • "Although it's difficult today to see beyond the sorrow, May looking back in memory help comfort you tomorrow."
    Author unknown
  • "Grief is itself a medicine."
    William Cowper
  • "Memory is a way of holding on to the things you love, the things you are, the things you never want to lose."
    from The Wonder Years
  • "The risk of love is loss, and the price of loss is grief - But the pain of grief isonly a shadow when compared with the pain of never risking love."
    Hillary Stanton Zunin
  • "You cannot prevent the birds of sorrow from flying over your head, but you can prevent them from building nests in your hair."
    Old Chinese proverb
  • "Death leaves a heartache no one can heal, love leaves a memory no one can steal."
    From a headstone in Ireland
  • "No one ever told me that grief felt so much like fear."
    C.S Lewis
  • "Grief is not a disorder, a disease or a sign of weakness. It is an emotional, physical and spiritual necessity, the price you pay for love. The only cure for grief is to grieve."
    Earl Grollman
  • "Nothing that grieves us can be called little; by the external laws of proportion a child's loss of a doll and a king's loss of a crown are events of the same size."
    Mark Twain, 'Which Was The Dream?'
  • "There's a bit of magic in everything, and some loss to even things out."
    Lou Reed, 'Magic And Loss'
  • "There is a sacredness in tears. They are not the mark of weakness, but of power. They speak more eloquently than ten thousand tongues. They are the messengers of overwhelming grief, of deep contrition, and of unspeakable love."
    Washington Irving
  • "There is no pain so great as the memory of joy in present grief."
  • "Tears are the silent language of grief."
  • "Happiness is beneficial for the body, but it is grief that develops the powers of the mind."
    Marcel Proust
  • "There is no grief like the grief that does not speak."
    Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
  • "Grief can't be shared. Everyone carries it alone; his own burden in his own way."
    Anne Morrow Lindbergh
  • "Grief is the price we pay for love."
    Queen Elizabeth II
  • "Given a choice between grief and nothing, I'd choose grief."
    William Faulkner
  • "Grief changes shape, but it never ends."
    Keanu Reeves
  • "If you've got to my age, you've probably had your heart broken many times. So it's not that difficult to unpack a bit of grief from some little corner of your heart and cry over it."
    Emma Thompson
  • "You don't go around grieving all the time, but the grief is still there and always will be."
    Nigella Lawson
  • "Grief is like a moving river, it's always changing. I would say in some ways it just gets worse. It's just that the more time that passes, the more you miss someone."
    Michelle Williams
  • "Grief knits two hearts in closer bonds than happiness ever can; and common sufferings are far stronger links than common joys."
    Alphonse de Lamartine
  • "The life of the dead is placed in the memory of the living."
    Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • "Let no one weep for me, or celebrate my funeral with mourning; for I still live, as I pass to and fro through the mouths of men."
    Quintus Ennius
  • "Tears are sometimes an inappropriate response to death. When a life has been lived completely honestly, completely successfully, or just completely, the correct response to death's perfect punctuation mark is a smile."
    Julie Burchill
  • "You can clutch the past so tightly to your chest that it leaves your arms too full to embrace the present."
    Jan Gildwell
  • "As long as I can I will look at this world for both of us. As long as I can I will laugh with the birds, I will sing with the flowers, I will pray to the stars, for both of us."
  • "When you are sorrowful look again in your heart, and you shall see that in truth you are weeping for that which has been your delight."
    Kahlil Gibran
  • "There should be a statute of limitation on grief. A rule book that says it is all right to wake up crying, but only for a month. That after 42 days you will no longer turn with your heart racing, certain you have heard her call out your name. That there will be no fine imposed if you feel the need to clean out her desk; take down her artwork from the refrigerator; turn over a school portrait as you pass - if only because it cuts you fresh again to see it. That it's okay to measure the time she has been gone, the way we once measured her birthdays."
    Jodi Picoult
  • "Grieving is a necessary passage and a difficult transition to finally letting go of sorrow - it is not a permanent rest stop."
  • "Tears have a wisdom all their own. They come when a person has relaxed enough to let go and to work through his sorrow. They are the natural bleeding of an emotional wound, carrying the poison out of the system. Here lies the road to recovery."
    F. Alexander Magoun
  • "When someone you love dies, and you're not expecting it, you don't lose her all at once; you lose her in pieces over a long time - the way the mail stops coming, and her scent fades from the pillows and even from the clothes in her closet and drawers. Gradually, you accumulate the parts of her that are gone. Just when the day comes - when there's a particular missing part that overwhelms you with the feeling that she's gone, forever - there comes another day, and another specifically missing part."
    John Irving
  • "Give sorrow words; the grief that does not speak whispers the o'er-fraught heart and bids it break."
    William Shakespeare
  • "No farewell words were spoken, no time to say goodbye, you were gone before we knew it, and only God knows why."
    Author unknown
  • "I'm gone now, but I'm still very near, death can never separate us. Each time you feel a gentle breeze, it's my hand caressing your face. Each time the wind blows, it carries my voice whispering your name. When the wind blows your hair ever so slightly, think of it as me pushing a few stray hairs back in place. When you feel a few raindrops fall on your face, it's me placing soft kisses. At night look up in the sky and see the stars shining so brightly. I'm one of those stars and I'm winking at you and smiling with delight. For never forget, you're the apple of my eye."
    Mary M Green
  • "There are three needs of the griever: To find the words for the loss, to say the words aloud and to know that the words have been heard."
    Victoria Alexander
  • "You will lose someone you can't live without, and your heart will be badly broken, and the bad news is that you never completely get over the loss of your beloved. But this is also the good news. They live forever in your broken heart that doesn't seal back up. And you come through. It's like having a broken leg that never heals perfectly - that still hurts when the weather gets cold, but you learn to dance with the limp."
    Anne Lamott
  • "Tears water our growth."
    William Shakespeare
  • "Why does it take a minute to say hello and forever to say goodbye?"
    Author unknown
  • "What soap is for the body, tears are for the soul."
    Jewish proverb
  • "Perhaps they are not stars in the sky, but rather openings where our loved ones shine down to let us know they are happy."
    Eskimo legend
  • "When someone you love becomes a memory, the memory becomes a treasure."
    Author unknown
  • "God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can and the wisdom to know the difference."
    Author unknown
  • "Dying is nothing to fear. It can be the most wonderful experience of your life. It all depends on how you've lived."
    Dr. Elisabeth Kubler-Ross
  • "The most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss, and have found their way out of the depths. These persons have an appreciation, a sensitivity, and an understanding of life that fills them with compassion, gentleness, and a deep loving concern. Beautiful people do not just happen."
    Dr. Elisabeth Kubler-Ross
  • "Don't cry because it's over. Smile because it happened."
    Dr. Seuss
  • "Although it's difficult today to see beyond the sorrow, may looking back in memory help comfort you tomorrow."
    Author unknown
  • "If tears could build a stairway, and memories a lane, I'd walk right up to heaven and bring you home again."
    Author unknown
  • "We've shared our lives these many years. You've held my hand; you've held my heart. So many blessings, so few tears - yet for a moment, we must part."
    Author unkown
  • "A beautiful colourful rainbow could not exist if it were not for the rain of a grey day - it was born from the very droplets of it."
    Author unkown
  • "In times of grief and sorrow I will hold you and rock you and take your grief and make it my own. When you cry I cry and when you hurt I hurt. And together we will try to hold back the floods of tears and despair and make it through the potholed street of life."
    Nicholas Sparks 'The Notebook'
  • "Without you in my arms, I feel an emptiness in my soul. I find myself searching the crowds for your face - I know it's an impossibility, but I cannot help myself."
    Nicholas Sparks 'Message In A Bottle'
  • "It's so curious: one can resist tears and 'behave' very well in the hardest hours of grief. But then someone makes you a friendly sign behind a window, or one notices that a flower that was in bud only yesterday has suddenly blossomed, or a letter slips from a drawer... and everything collapses."
  • "Time heals old pain, while it creates new ones."
  • "These days grief seems like walking on a frozen river; most of the time he feels safe enough, but there is always that danger he will plunge through."
    David Nicholls 'One Day'
  • "A life with love will have some thorns, but a life without love will have no roses."
  • "Love is like standing in wet cement, the longer you stay the harder to leave and you can never leave without leaving your marks behind."
    Author unknown
  • "I don't know why they call it heartbreak. It feels like every part of my body is broken too."
    Chloe Woodward
  • "The grave itself is but a covered bridge, Leading from light to light, through a brief darkness!"
    Henry Wadsworth Longfellow 'The Golden Legend'
  • "In my dream, I was drowning my sorrows But my sorrows they'd learned to swim"
    U2 'Until The End Of The World
  • "Every heart has its secret sorrows which the world knows not, and oftentimes we call a man cold, when he is only sad."
    Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
  • "Forgiveness is healing ... especially forgiving yourself."
    Alyson Noel 'Evermore'
  • "Of all Sad Words of Tongue or Pen, the Saddest are these, "It Might Have Been."
    George Ade 'More Fables'
  • "A ton of regret never makes an ounce of difference."
    Grenville Kleiser 'Dictionary Of Proverbs'
  • "That song is sweetest, bravest, best, Which plucks the thistle-barb of care From a despondent brother's breast, And plants a sprig of heart's-ease there."
    Andrew Downing 'The Sweetest Song'
  • "I still miss those I loved who are no longer with me but I find I am grateful for having loved them. The gratitude has finally conquered the loss."
    Rita Mae Brown
  • "Grief is what I feel when someone passes away, Grief is what I feel when I am concerned, Grief is what I feel when I have done wrong, Grief is what I feel when some accident happens, Grief is something that all people have gone through."
    Brandi Reissig
  • "Let us rise up and be thankful, for if we didn't learn a lot today, at least we learned a little, and if we didn't learn a little, at least we didn't get sick, and if we got sick, at least we didn't die, so let us all be thankful."
    Buddhist quote
  • "Words have the power to both destroy and heal. When words are both true and kind, they can change our world."
    Buddhist quote
  • "Do not dwell in the past, do not dream of the future, concentrate the mind on the present moment."
    Buddhist quote
  • "May all beings everywhere, Seen and unseen, Dwelling far off or nearby, Being or waiting to become, May all be filled with lasting joy."
    Buddhist quote
  • "Honest listening is one of the best medicines we can offer the dying and the bereaved."
    Jean Cameron
  • "People touch our lives if only for a moment, And yet we're not the same from that moment on, The time is not important, The moment is forever."
    Fern Bork
  • "Our grief is as individual as our lives."
    Dr. Elisabeth Kubler-Ross
  • "We must know the pain of loss; because if we never knew it, we would have no compassion for others, and we would become monsters of self-regard, creatures of unalloyed self-interest. The terrible pain of loss teaches humility to our prideful kind, has the power to soften uncaring hearts, to make a better person of a good one."
    Dean Koontz 'The Darkest Evening Of The Year'
  • "People touch our lives if only for a moment, And yet we're not the same from that moment on, The time is not important, The moment is forever."
    Fern Bork
  • "We get no choice. If we love, we grieve."
    Thomas Lynch
  • "Say not in grief 'he is no more' but live in thankfulness that he was."
    Hebrew proverb
  • "Everything that has a beginning has an ending. Make your peace with that and all will be well."
    Buddhist saying
  • "We need never be afraid of our tears."
    Charles Dickens
  • "Life is not the way it is supposed to be. It is the way it is. The way you cope with it is what makes the difference."
    Virginia Satir
  • "The melody that the loved one played upon the piano of your life will never be played quite that way again, but we must not close the keyboard and allow the instrument to gather dust. We must seek out other artists of the spirit, new friends who gradually will help us to find the road to life again, who will walk the road with us."
    Joshua Loth Liebman
  • "Those things that hurt instruct."
    Benjamin Franklin
  • "The fact that something has happened to a million other people diminishes neither grief nor joy."
    Author unkown
  • "I will welcome happiness for it enlarges my heart; Yet I will endure sadness for it opens my soul. I will acknowledge rewards for they are my due; Yet I will welcome obstacles for they are my challenge."
    Og Mandino
  • "Some people come in your life as blessings. Some come in your life as lessons."
    Mother Teresa
  • "The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched. They must be felt with the heart."
    Helen Keller
  • "We do not have to rely on memories to recapture the spirit of those we have loved and lost – they live within our souls in some perfect sanctuary which even death cannot destroy."
    Nan Witcomb