Philippa Lane

Rookie (March 7th,1941 / Chichester, West Sussex, England)

I Weep For You... - Poem by Philippa Lane


I weep for you, though no tears fall,
I watch you,
Your spirit broken.

World War II RAF veteran,
It took so long because, regardless,
You always soldiered on.

Now your skin is like a fallen autumn leaf,
Transparent, delicate,
Too sensitive to touch

Because of taut
And damaged nerves
From a dreadful illness.

Your tenuous frame riddled
In unexpected neuropathic pain -
It is strangely sad

You are a broken man.

My gift of loving you is all but lost,
For without touch, it is hard
To express my caring

When you talk despairingly.


But my children and their children
Still love you soundly,
You can be glad of that.

They remember walking in the rain with you
Spotting outcrops, ice fishing
And the birds of Point Pelee.

Do you still remember that?

Then - such carefree happiness,
Even blissful
I would say.


These past twenty years
I have seen your pain and anger
Rise and fall like loud explosions in the air

Jarring my mind.

Once, so long ago it seems,
You held my hand, read poems to me,
And showed me garden flowers

With Latin names,
Wild plants in the shady woods,
Wherever your heart went, you led me too.

Once you held me gently in your arms
And took me to Oka on the ferry boat,
Carrying us away from all memories

Of hospital just for one day.

You gave me unending loyalty
And a house to make into a home
For all of us.


Sometimes, the past caught me up
In its webbed arms, alarm bells
Clanging in my mind:

Flashbacks struck me like a cobra,
Stunning me, flaying me,
It all seemed surreal.

But now I live a death.

You that loved so deeply
Are no more, I think.

Your corporeal life is fading now,
Your rugged spirit challenged so,
Tested to its limits.

I wonder why you never walked with me
Holding hands like other couples do?
All this time, I have sipped coffee

In the village quite alone,
Gypsy woman roaming,
Loneliness a constant in my day.

I often drag my heart around,
Bitter memories plaguing me,
One whole decade blacked out.

Now hope stagnates
Like a slimy green pond
Yet teeming with life underneath

Its murky waters.


You see me well and wonder why

Would you rather see me
On the Prince-of-Wales' couch
Sleeping each day out?

Sorry, but I refuse to do that now,
I snipped the tethered bond -
that relationship is null and void

An empty shell.

You would rather see me on the couch,
I think, enabling me to turn
Into a helpless child again.

Then you could nurture me
Feeling comfortable,
And talk with the neighbours

Who ask: 'How is she today? ',
'Such a shame', you say,
Yes, another day of living gone -

Awful suffering needlessly.


I always bear in mind
Your childhood pain,
The story I know so well

But you fly into red rages
And put me in Coventry.
Then, all you have to say

Is: 'Shut up, woman',
To anything I have to say,
So in anger and dismay

I turn away from you,
You who have cared
So much for me,

Seem like a stranger,
Who no longer wants to share
Moments together.

I am sad indeed.


To you now I say:
Stay away from me:
I need no more.

But if you still can truly love,
Please share your twilight
Dreams with me.

For now I am strong and free,
I scale the clouds and fly
Into blue heavens

Of eternity.

Philippa Lane

(Senneville, Québec)
(April 5th,2005)


Comments about I Weep For You... by Philippa Lane

  • (3/1/2010 1:03:00 AM)

    A poem of exceptional reflection, written with deep honesty and intuitive understanding, the cross of partial survival is a burden that breaks, nerves fraying in old age compounding into an old age shell shock is par for the course, yet assaults the senses and memories of those who must watch; this later years disintegration with too close and caring an eye. God Bless and be with you always. (Report)Reply

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  • (4/26/2009 4:46:00 AM)

    the emotions are passionately expressed and ur tears brighten the poem and we c its magnificence quite clearly..amazing write! (Report)Reply

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  • Sarwar Chowdhury (10/21/2008 5:47:00 AM)

    Heart-felt composition, thoughtful too.
    what a tremendous and painful life of human!
    finely penned....10++++

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  • (10/20/2008 3:02:00 AM)

    a beautiful love poem
    but one that describes
    the deep pain.
    (I have seen your greatness
    through the eyes of Syed Kamran)
    love anju

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  • (7/26/2007 7:46:00 PM)

    This is a powerful poem. It is very well written, very descriptive, and full of emotion. Excellent! (Report)Reply

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  • (3/25/2007 8:40:00 PM)

    this poem took me on on the most emotional roller coaster ever., my god, your descriptions are captivating. I am sorry you hurt, then again, I am happy you loved.. see i don't even know what to say still. i don't even know how i feel..aggghhh, a roller coaster for sure. i absolutely love it. (Report)Reply

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  • (6/4/2006 1:16:00 PM)

    I am left breathless, this is such a loving and splendid read. Your greatness with words can not meet mere words.

    Patricia Gale

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  • (7/16/2005 1:21:00 PM)

    Congratulations on a very sincere and honest poem that seems to me to be basically a love poem but one that doesn't flinch from describing the pain and tribulations that can sometimes accompany a lifetime's love (Report)Reply

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  • (7/15/2005 9:51:00 AM)

    shocking and powerful in its heart-rending honesty. Leaves me a bit breathless.
    This is a very powerful piece, Phillipa.
    I THINK (not positive, I've only read it once) that some day there might be ways you could tighten it a little. My sense is that the man (your husband) in the poem has his pain, and you, the wife, had a different pain (which is now substantially healed) .
    The two merge into each other for me, a LITTLE. Maybe at some point you could make them a little more distinct from one another in the reader's mind. Possibly by numbering parts of the poem (1) about him, (2) about your own history,3 (about your newfound freedom and dignity) . I'm not sure. Anyone else concur? (If other readers disagree with me, please say so, so the poet can get the feedback.)

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  • (7/15/2005 9:25:00 AM)

    This is a most heartbreaking poem, Philippa. 'Flashbacks struck me like a cobra' such a good line. I would like to see more of those good similes in the rest of your poem to make it stronger.


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Poem Submitted: Friday, July 15, 2005

Poem Edited: Wednesday, February 28, 2007

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