Hi, Robert Shields here talking to you from the U.K.
There is no
ulterior motive in publishing the following poem as it
can be found on hundreds of web sites, but it is so
beautiful and appropriate to the U.K.'s present day
hospital care problems, I thought it should be read
again, and again to get the message across that our
nursing profession do care.
It is a
poem that was found after the death of an old woman patient in
a U.K. hospital. Please read it more than once to
understand it more fully.
The Cry of a Crabbit Old Woman
What do you see
nurses, what do you see?
Are you thinking, when you look at me.
A crabbit old
woman, not very wise,
Uncertain of habit, with far-away eyes,
Who dribbles her
food and makes no reply
When you say in a loud voice,
I do wish you'd
Who seems not to notice the things that
And forever is
loosing a stocking or shoe.
Who, unresisting or
not; lets you do as you will
With bathing and feeding the long day is fill.
that what you're thinking,
that what you see?
Then open your
looking at me.
I'll tell you who I am as I sit here so
As I rise at your bidding, as I eat at your will.
I'm a small child
of 10 with a father and mother,
sisters, who loved one another-
A young girl of 16
with wings on her feet,
Dreaming that soon now a lover she'll meet,
A bride soon at 20-
my heart gives a leap,
Remembering the vows that I promised to keep.
At 25 now I have
young of my own
Who need me to
build a secure happy home;
A woman of 30, my
young now grow fast,
Bound to each other with ties that should last;
At 40, my young
sons have grown and are gone,
But my man's beside me to see I don't mourn;
At 50 once more
babies play around my knee,
Again we know children, my loved one and me.
Dark days are upon
me, my husband is dead,
I look at the future, I shudder with dread,
For my young are
all rearing young of their own.
And I think of
the years and the love that I've known;
I'm an old woman now and nature is
Tis her jest
to make old age look like a fool.
The body is
crumbled, grace and vigor depart,
There is now a stone where I once had a heart,
But inside this old
carcass, a young girl still dwells,
And now and again
my battered heart swells,
I remember the joy,
I remember the pain,
And I'm loving and
living life over again.
I think of the
years all too few- gone too fast.
And accept the stark fact that nothing can last-
So open your eyes,
nurse, open and see,
Not a crabbit old
woman, look closer - see
Author unknown but acknowledged with heartfelt
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