Saturday, August 22, 2009

All my possessions for a moment of time

"All my possessions for a moment of time" - apparently the last words spoken by Queen Elizabeth 1st of England as she lay dying.

(Meaning - she wished she could exchange all her worldly possessions for a brief moment of time.)

Studying her history, I think she said it with a hint of irony or just for dramatic effect, and not in desperation. Like King Canute - she was playing around with words. Perhaps trying to find a Shakespearean phrase as her life was ending?

Or perhaps she was fearful of death. Of what awaited her in the next life? In that realm she was no longer a ruler but a subject - and would face a certain judgement of which she no doubt felt some unease.

Who knows?

I think of all the Queen Elizabeth 1st production - the one I love the best is the one done by Helen Mirren. Her acting was sheer brilliance. And her chemistry with Jeremy Irons playing the Earl of Leicester was simply perfect. Watch her as she switches from anger upon learning about the execution of Mary Queen of Scots to a mortified repentant as she prays for forgiveness.Sheer brilliance.

She has such incredible screen presence that you could feel the sheer venom emanating from her rage. Another actor who is just as good is Daniel Day Lewis in "There will be Blood".

I wrote this poem about what Queen E may have been thinking.

All my possessions for a moment of your time
A moment to reflect
A moment to ponder
A moment to weep for what was lost

All my possessions for a moment of your time
A time long gone
A lover that will not love back
A moment lost forever

All my possessions are useless to me
My gold, my silver, my palatial palaces
They cannot love me
They cannot return your affection

I would trade all my possessions
To hear your voice kindly call out my name again
To feel the touch of your hand
To sleep on the warmth of your chest.

No more. No more.
You are gone.
And all I have are my possessions.
Yauming Chiam July 2013.


Anonymous said...

Probably talking about Robert Dudley :-)

Yau-ming YMC said...

If so, she might have said, "All my possession for a moment of *his* time."