Maureen Lipman

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Oklahoma! | Oh, What a Beautiful Mornin’
Hugh Jackman, with Maureen Lipman, in the 1999 Royal National Theatre production

Music: Richard Rodgers
Lyrics & Book: Oscar Hammerstein II

If Thou Must Love Me
Sonnet 14
by Elizabeth Barrett Browning (1806-1861)
Read by Maureen Lipman

If thou must love me, let it be for nought
Except for love’s sake only. Do not say,
“I love her for her smile — her look — her way
Of speaking gently, — for a trick of thought
That falls in well with mine, and certes brought
A sense of pleasant ease on such a day” —
For these things in themselves, Belovèd, may
Be changed, or change for thee — and love, so wrought,
May be unwrought so. Neither love me for
Thine own dear pity’s wiping my cheeks dry, —
A creature might forget to weep, who bore
Thy comfort long, and lose thy love thereby!
But love me for love’s sake, that evermore
Thou may'st love on, through love’s eternity.

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I’m a little obsessed with Hugh Jackman as Curly McLain in Oklahoma!…and you can watch the full filmed version of this production on DVD! (Those in the US can  also stream it for free on PBS’s website.)

(For the record, if you’ve seen our webseries episode about Oklahoma! you’ll recognize this scene, hopefully, from our weird doodle reenactment of the intro.)

  • Track 20
  • Maureen Lipman
  • WORDS FOR YOU
Play

 Missing You By Penelope Shuttle

(verses 1, 2 and 21)

read by Maureen Lipman

1

This year no-one will ask how you voted,

or if you know the way to town

No-one will call you as an eye-witness

or teach you how to train a bird of prey

No-one will bring you your New Scientist,

try to sell you double-glazing

or tell you their secrets

People will write to you

but you won’t answer their letters

The high sheriff of mistletoe

will never catch your eye again

No-one will peel apples for you,

or love you more than you can bear

No-one will forget you

2

I wept in Tesco,

Sainsburys

and in Boots

where they gave me

medicine for grief

But I wept in Asda,

in Woolworths

and in the library

where they gave me

books on grief

I wept in Clarks

looking in vain for shoes

that would stop me weeping

I wept on the peace march

and all through the war

I wept in Superdrug

where they gave me

a free box of tissues

I wept in the churches,

the empty empty churches,

and in the House of Commons –

they voted me out of office

21

I’ve lived with your death for a year,

that despot death, that realist,

stunned,

as if I’ve just given birth to a foal,

or made an enemy of the rain

All at once

you had more important things to do

than to live

Death is the feather in your cap,

the source of your fame,

my darkest lesson

This dropout year closes,

I begin my second year without you,

just me and the paper-thin world

To Hull and Back

Sophie still lives at home with her mum in Hull. They make a living doing car boot sales at the weekend - except they don’t really make a living because her mum can’t bear to get rid of any of their junk. As their house gets more cluttered, Sophie feels more trapped, and dreams of moving to London to meet her dad and become a famous actress. But will this dream come true?

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