An Elegy for England

An Elegy for England


As you sink beneath the waves of time

I lament your demise with a heavy heart

Dearly loved I carry in my heart memories of you

Tears well up in my eyes as I witness your passing

as the morning dew is squeezed from your verdant pastures

The honour and dignity of your past glory

ebbs like an out going tide leaving a bare pool in the sands of time

Farewell to a language so eloquent as a fountain of free expression

a beacon of liberty and refuge now consumed by its own generosity

Your men folk who gave their all for your defence

now lie in foreign lands far from the shores they loved

A history of monarchs, poets and generals

who were gilded with patriotism, gone forever

The world turned to you for inspiration and hope

in times of trial and many turbulent wars

Your laws and ways were just, cradled

in a Christian civilisation of fairness and justice for all

I glimpse at your faltering departure

I hear your last gasps of life

I loved you as no other could



◄ The Enemy Within

The New Czar ►


Profile image

Emeka Collins

Sun 1st May 2022 02:35

Truth reverberates in every line. I still wonder what old has become new on English soil. I just choose to call it advance.

Profile image

jennifer Malden

Fri 29th Apr 2022 22:18

So well written, and basically couldn't agree more, although I have reservations about some of our past. You are right about the deterioration in values and behaviour.


Profile image

keith jeffries

Wed 9th Feb 2022 19:14

Thanks as always for your considered response and comment. You are a valued critic. I have one question to ask.
As an atheist, a position I respect, where do you think our laws and traditions come from?
Thank you again

Profile image

kJ Walker

Tue 8th Feb 2022 09:03

A very thought provoking piece.
I too mourn the passing of the nation that we once were, and dread what we are becoming, but not for the same reasons that this piece seems to suggest.
The way that our language changes is simply the way that languages develope. If they didn't change we'd still be speaking old Saxon, or the language imposed on us by our Norman conquerers.
"A beacon of liberty and refuge now consumed by its own generosity" this line to me suggests that we do too much to help others, and are now suffering as a consequence. In my opinion, the we are not nearly generous enough, and could do a lot better.
This poem also links Christianity to civilization, fairness and justice. I'm an atheist, so find it hard to see that link.

As I say, I too mourn the passing of the nation. But what I mourn is a society where decency and honesty were valued, and politicians were held to account.

Profile image

keith jeffries

Sun 23rd Jan 2022 22:18

Thank you to all who 'liked' and those who commented on this elegy. I wrote it with no particular motive in my mind. I was inspired to write it as a lament because in my lifetime I have seen a marked deterioration in our values and common behaviour. My father once said that all things are only by comparison and this elegy is drawn from my experience of having witnessed a decline in a period since the end of the second world war. I think many others of my age will have seen this also.
Thank you again for reading this elegy and your kind and constructive comments.

Profile image

Stephen Gospage

Sun 23rd Jan 2022 21:53

This is a fine poem about England and Englishness, Keith. There are many things I admire about England and, to be honest, some which I like less, such as boorish nationalism. Pleased to see that you steer clear of that here and I wonder if you are (perhaps intentionally) a little pessimistic. From where I am, many good things still remain.

Profile image

Stephen Atkinson

Sun 23rd Jan 2022 16:49

A good thought provoking piece, Keith
Brilliantly written, as always

Profile image

Pete (edbreathe)

Sat 22nd Jan 2022 23:35

Good poem, s*** I hope not !

Profile image

John Botterill

Sat 22nd Jan 2022 22:18

Sad but accurate, Keith. I enjoy and admire the poetry but lament the truth you describe!

Profile image

Kevin Tan

Sat 22nd Jan 2022 21:25

Everything changes. Whether that will be better or worse lies mainly in our perception.

May culture cure us and nature nourish us.

All blessings

Profile image

M.C. Newberry

Sat 22nd Jan 2022 15:18

Much to identify with here. Perhaps England has reached that
stage when history will mark her by what she has exported
rather than by what she has now become..
Mark well what England has shown to the world
Like a flag that daily is proudly unfurled.

If you wish to post a comment you must login.

This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse, you are agreeing to our use of cookies.

Find out more Hide this message