Ballad of the UnBeheading

There was a bard in London town
who in her jest ticked off the Crown
o’re the square they hung her upside down
from atop the Tow’r of London.

A priest was called to give the rites;
they held him ore’ her by his tights
There he became afraid of heights
There on the Tow’r o’ London.

The priest was hauled back up the wall
But could ever hear the singing call
That echoed off each stoney wall
Within the Tow’r o’ London.

To be a bard is rather hard
varitas et cantus
to bear the weight of truth and song
can get a girl in trouble-o.

Soon came the carrion birds so black
They sat upon her hanging back
And planned to have a little snack
Utop the Tow’r o’ London.

One crow said, “Brothers, here’s a treat!
Our friend—the bard is made of meat.
Her words offend, but she tastes sweet,
here atop the Tow’r of London.”

They left her chords alone, the crows,
Picking bits off of her toes
And so the Bard’s high voice it rose
From atop the Tow’r of London.”

To be a bard is rather hard
varitas et cantus
to bear the weight of truth and song
can get a girl in trouble-o.

The bard could not her jesting cease
“Look at how they flock like geese
“to watch me go to final peace
“Atop the Tow’r o’ London.”

The birds they dined upon her eyes
they were not troubled by her sighs
The crowds below could watch her die
from atop the Tow’r o’ London.

The Bard made rhymes while crows did peck
a bob-and-wheel ‘bout bleeding neck.
“I could complain, but what the heck!
I’m atop the Tow’r o’ London.”

To be a bard is rather hard
varitas et cantus
to bear the weight of truth and song
can get a girl in trouble-o.

…“All you folk out in the crowd
“Think you not that I am proud?
“To make my best and final bow’d
Atop the Tow’r o’ London.

Ere she become a love-ed clown
the sheriff tried to take her down
but was hit with fruit throughout the town
seen from the Tow’r o’ London.

…They sent the executioner
to take the curly head from her
but alas, he was a saboteur
atop the Tow’r o’ London.

To be a bard is rather hard
varitas et cantus
to bear the weight of truth and song
can get a girl in trouble-o.

The sabateur was stern and hard,
but he took a shine to the curly bard.
(Did I say that sabateur was hard?)
atop the Tow’r o’ London.

The Knight from Thanet, with regret,
was sent to cease the red-haired threat
but with remorse was he was beset
atop the Tow’r o’ London.

A count was sent, with a sharpened knife
to end her song, and take her life.
Instead her took her, like a wife.
atop the Tow’r o’ London.

To be a bard is rather hard
varitas et cantus
to bear the weight of truth and song
can get a girl in trouble-o.

no sounds now issued from her throat
but her soul was not yet in charon’s boat
though her body tossed down to the moat
from atop the Tow’r o’ London.

The bard could swim well – like a fish
she’s fled the moat with a great swish
and the count and she both got their wish
soaked ‘neath the Tow’r o’ London.

The bard, the count, they’re on their way
and rumoring is here to stay
The crows are now acting the play
Atop the Tow’r o’ London.

To be a bard is rather hard
varitas et cantus
to bear the weight of truth and song
can get a girl in trouble-o.

But a bard’s voice carries far and wide
While she searched for a place to hide
Her jest still echoed clear inside,
In walls and Tow’r o’ London.

At last the noisy bard was found
They killed her dead upon the ground,
but even dead she made a sound!
echo’d the Tow’r o’ London.

Lucan’s muse, though gone away,
Her bardic tales they still do play,
the legends trace is here to stay
Haunting the Tow’r o’ London.

To be a bard is rather hard
varitas et cantus
to bear the weight of truth and song
can get a girl in trouble-o.

(I’ll add the list of who contributed….)

 

_____________________________________

(The post that inspired this, ahem, brilliant idea is this:

Plotting for Pennsic makes me think that I would have rocked at court intrigue. Except that I’m mostly transparent, and a lousy poker player. Ok, nevermind, I would totally have been beheaded or locked in the Tower of London. (Upside, there’d now be a singing ghost! What a tourist attraction!)

Ohhhhhh there was a bard in London town

who in her jest ticked off the Crown

o’re the square they hung her upside down

from atop the Tow’r of London.

 

The crows they sat upon her feet

they flew her stolen bits of meat

they thought her croaking quite a treat

from atop the Tow’r of London.

CHORUS

To be a bard is rather hard

varitas et cantus

to bear the weight of truth and song

can get a girl in trouble-o.

NOW – YOU ALL WRITE THE REST OF THE VERSES. I will SING IT AT PENNSIC, on WAR TUESDAY NIGHT in the STREET on ByTheWay in front of  THANET HOUSE at N15 at 7:00 SHARP.  Feel free to share the glory. Or torture. =)  (Some of the verses may be edited a little for scansion and order. =D I swear the spirit will remain the same, and any bards harmed in the making of this song will remain so!!)

A

 

Dance the War Away

Dance the War Away (formerly “Together in the Fray”)
This song is featured on the CD “I Am of the North” available for purchase online at:  http://www.cdbaby.com/cd/aneledafalconbridge/

I had a dream while sleeping low
As vivid as the day
You were fighting by my side
Bedecked with colors gay

Arm by arm, no one could harm us
Running in the fray
A merry singing in my ears
As we danced the war away

You leapt, you ran, you smiled, you sang
I Felt my bravery swell
Standing with you at my side
As swords about us fell

The beating of the battle drum
Called it’s rough tattoo
The rhythm of my coeur du guerre
Matched every beat with you

Arm by arm, no one could harm us
Running in the fray
A merry singing in my ears
As we danced the war away

The sky was blue, cloudless, bright
Our golden armor shone
Such Joie du combat in the air
As I had never known

The field was grassy flat and green
The banners rippling waves
We heard lay on the cannon roar
And a mighty fight we gave

Arm by arm, no one could harm us
Running in the fray
A merry singing in my ears
As we danced the war away

Surrounded by our friends we were
On fields bordered with hay
We helped raise up the noble dead
And together walked way.
I had a dream while sleeping low
As vivid as the day
So real I thought I lived it once
Perhaps some day I may

Arm by arm, no one could harm us
Running in the fray
A merry singing in my ears
As we danced the war away

Reynardine’s Lady

This song was started some years ago, and forgotten, until I found a fragment of it on paper tonight and at last finished the tale I began. It still has no tune, but it will come. I’d consider this an early draft, despite the length in years it has taken to write it. There’s a shade of “The Cardinal Ordained” here as well, this predates even that piece.

 

Your father is gone, lost to the night

But of noble blood, it is true, I was born

and I go to defend our home and our land

and avenge my beloved, before God now sworn.

 

Deep from the box she lifted the thing

rough cloth fell way from its glaring shine.

This was my father’s own sword, she said softly,

our great treasure still, young Renardyne.

 

I have saved it in here for many a year

For iron so cold was your father’s one bane

It was all that I brought from my other life,

To men from that life it shall cause bitter pain.

 

She had followed my father by star and by moon

Over the great green hill

They had loved well all their days,

And if not for those curs, Love would have still.

 

Reynardyne, son, they will hunt you forever,

So go to the green castle deep in the wood.

For all of my days, I swear to protect you

I have kept them all from us as long as I could.

 

Now you take your sisters, you wrap them tight;

answer no sound at the the door – not a one

burn ye no fire, nor candle for light

Until I or the time of this fighting is done.

 

If I do not return within two days time,

all three of ye go to the great church to pray.

And while you are safe within its stony walls,

light a candle for each of the men I shall slay.

 

She had followed my father by star and by moon

Over the great green hill

They had loved well all their days,

And if not for those curs, Love would have still.

 

She strapped that great weapon upon her back

Over my father’s clothes she had put on

She tied back her hair and kissed us each fiercely,

as she swept into the wood as swiftly as dawn.

 

We hid for two days then fled to the church.

A monk knew my father and so took us in.

Dozens of candles were lit for her soul

to atone for the murders, though they claimed it no sin.

 

On the fourth day at Vespers she came through the song

Bloodied and weak, she fell through the door.

All of the herbs and the candles and Aves

could not bring back the man who she lived for.

 

She had followed my father by star and by moon

Over the great green hill

They had loved well all their days,

And if not for those curs, Love would have still.

 

Light me more candles, o friar, she begged,

I slew them like cattle beset with a plague

I did not spare a one when I came upon them.

I hunted them down over valley and craig.

 

Some call him a rake, and some call him sly.

Few know of the ruby-lipped maiden, once queen

who tamed the wise fox with her beauty and love,

my mother, the lady of bold Renardyne.

 

She had followed my father by star and by moon

Over the great green hill

They had loved well all their days,

And if not for those curs, Love would have still.

Saturday Night Up In Asgard

Ever wonder why those big thunderstorms seem to come in on the weekends……

“Saturday Night Up In Asgard”

We were wandering about in the fjords
Our longship was up on the sand
When we heard a mighty rumble
That shook both the sea and the land

We fled to the nearest township
Taking refuge within the mead hall
We prayed to the whole Norse pantheon
As we waited for mountains to fall

Was great Thor a-hitting with Mjölnir?
Who was getting that beating, if so?
What in all of the creatures of legend
Could shake all of Midguard below??

As we shuddered below the tables
We heard a gruff snort from nearby
Where a toothless old crone set to laughing
While she pointed up to the sky

“Oh it’s Saturday night up in Asgard
And round here we know what that means,
For when Thor spent time down among us
….he discovered wieners and beans.”

We had just looked up in amazement
At this old one’s frightening tale
When the whole hall nearly blew sideways
From the force of a hideous gale.

What a sound accompanied that fury
‘Twas a noise no mortal ought hear
And the scent that brutally followed it
Was clearly of baked beans and beer.

Oh it’s Saturday night up in Asgard
And round here we know what that means,
For when Thor spent time down among us
….he discovered weiners and beans.

Now they do not serve beans up in Asgard
For reasons e’en mortals discern
But one night a week up in Asguard
The thundering god has his turn.

We stuck out the night in the longhouse
We drank till we heard it no more
“God of Thunder” now had a new meaning
…and we all started worshiping Thor!

For when it’s Saturday night up in Asgard
Around here we know what that means,
For when Thor spent time down among us
….he discovered wieners and beans.

The Call of the Drum

http://www.mbouchard.com/misc/Call-of-the-Drum.mp3

With the leaves comes the war
and the call of the drum,
as we take up our honor
for crown and kingdom.
As the summer trees shake
after the red dawn,
We march to the fields
of death,  
drink, and song.

From the north come the people
who follow the star
where the ice-shattered waters
collect on their spars.
By the cold firece wind blowing
they will each travel far.
When they gather as one
all will know who they are.

With the leaves comes the war…etc.

From the east come the the people
who live by the sea,
farming salt-scented meadows
bringing fish to the quay,
working the sweet land
beneath the ash tree.
When they gather as one
all men shall be kept free.

With the leaves comes the war…etc.

From the south come the people
who live in the wood
sustained by the mountains
as only they could,
stalking wild creatures
with a bow and a hood.
When they gather as one
all will be as it should.

With the leaves comes the war…etc.

From the west come the people
who live on the plain
where hunting is easy
and the earth gives fine grain.
They work and they sing
and they never complain.
When they gather as one
their foes shall find pain.

With the leaves comes the war…etc.

From all paths come the people,
and all places between,
bearing banners all colors
and bright weapons keen.
Regret to the foe
who caused them to convene.
When they gather together
their might shall be seen.

With the leaves comes the war
and the call of the drum,
as we take up our honor
for crown and kingdom.
As the summer trees shake
after the red dawn,
We march to the fields
of death,
drink, and song.

We march to the fields
of death,
drink, and song.

 __________________________________________

This song was written before the Pennsic War, for Brennan and Wulfgar, inspired by posts from them on Facebook before Pennsic.