Tread lightly, she is near
Under the snow,
Speak gently, she can hear
The daisies grow

All her bright golden hair
Tarnished with rust,
She that was young and fair
Fallen to dust.

Lily-like, white as snow,
She hardly knew
She was a woman, so
Sweetly she grew.

Coffin-board, heavy stone,
Lie on her breast,
I vex my heart alone
She is at rest.

Peace, Peace, she cannot hear
Lyre or sonnet, All my life’s buried here,
Heap earth upon it.

- Oscar Wilde, from Rosa Mystica, 1881
Requiescat comes from the latin verb requiescere meaning to rest. It is a single word prayer for the dead to let her rest and for their souls to be protected. Oscar Wilde wrote a poem called Requiescat in 1881 about a girl the narrator had loved who had passed away. It is thought that Wilde was thinking about his then ex-fiance who deserted him and married Bram Stoker, although she was still alive during the publication of his poem.

Track number twelve on Duncan Sheik's third album Phantom Moon is entitled Requiescat as well. The song, similar to Wilde's poem, is about a girl who is no longer alive and how their love is "no more for evermore." The term requiescat can also be seen under the heading of obituaries in several different newspapers across the United States.

Requiescat is more specifically the third person singular present subjunctive of requiescere. Standing, as it is, alone with only the poem to give it context, it would be best translated from the Latin into English as, 'Let Her Rest.' This, in fact, is the meaning implied in the first and last four lines of the poem.

Concerning rest in peace, the translation for that into Latin would be requiesce in pace . Fortunate how the acronym RIP, having been coined by the Romans, is still able to be used, despite the decline of Latin.

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