The Thousand Isles

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Post by The Archet Bugle on Fri Jul 19, 2013 4:39 am

8
Aethelfane


Aethelfane was a Saxon Man,
Who had fled the fierce Britons,
On a leaky ship he'd traversed
The Isles on a mission,

He had sought to make himself a name,
But not by a sword’s prowess!
No, he landed on the Isle of Evan,
And made Hostelry his business.

He was in fact a coward,
No exemplar of his Race,
A Ruler over kitchen maids,
For Men he would not face,

A weedy man by composition,
His courage, a feeble reed,
To overpower a female was for him
Indeed a doughty deed,

And as to his Stable Boys,
He ruled with an Iron Fist,
And because he held the purse strings,
These boys would not resist.

So he barked at them and beat them,
Whether for reason or for whim,
And for any crime or no crime,
It was all the same to him,

For his mood could turn black,
For reasons quite unknown,
And in such mood it was never wise,
To be caught with him alone.

Owen's day was bad enough,
But he learned it could still descend,
This, when his Master arrived
in a mood easy to offend.

“What do you with my own horse?”
Aethelfane wanted to know.
“I but rub his shoulder, Sir,
See how his coat does glow.”

“What? Like a piece mud?
She barely shows her sheen!
Why must I put up with lazy Lads?”
“You know, full well, she gleams!”

“Impertinent lad, I’ll not have you,
Speak in such an outrageous tone,
I should take up my whip,
And slice you to the bone!”

On any other day, the boy, I’m sure,
Would have thought him just perverse,
But had he not just that morning,
Laid his Mother in the earth?

In no mood to cower, no,
He said, “Go away, you fool,
Go and bother someone else,
I don’t know why you're so cruel.”

The Ostler’s face reddened,
But he had got what he desired,
“Well, boy! You’ve done it now!
I will set your flesh a'fire!”

But Owen was not daunted,
For once he felt no fear,
His pain now turned to anger,
A purpose was now clear.

Aetherlfane came at him,
He raised on high his whip,
But when he swung it down,
Owen caught it in his grip.

“How would you like it?
How would you taste the lick?”
Owen asked, his eyes rolled back,
His brain with passion thick.

“Now, boy, don’t be hasty,
Don't you go and be a fool,
Don’t do anything you’ll regret,
You must obey my rules.”

But Owen was out of mind,
All grief and pain made play,
In his head was vengeance,
And not just for today.

A strong boy made powerful,
By years and years of gloom,
He took to the Saxon, Aethelfane,
Gave him his proper due.

The foolish deed was soon done,
The Ostler blubbered on the floor,
And Owen in all his bitter pride,
Marched out the stable door.
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Post by The Archet Bugle on Fri Jul 19, 2013 12:29 pm

9
Evan Port


Darkness herself crept like shroud,
Upon the Isle of Evan,
Sea birds wheeled in the sky,
Under the pinpricked light of Heaven,

Over rock and cove and wood,
Darkness slowly spread herself,
Over houses where the living lay,
Over earth where lay the dead,

Over surrounding seas,
Over coastal rock and sand,
Over Evan Port, with all its boats,
And ships humble or grand.

An anxious murmur seethed in the dark,
The whole town seemed so tense,
Few walked the lonely streets,
And those few with secret intent,

Clad in cloaks, three figures moved,
Along grey lanes to the Port,
Furtive shadows among more shadows,
Careful not to be caught.

At a tavern nearing the docks,
Five further shadows stood,
“Who goes there?” one shadow asked,
“Is your purpose evil or good?”

One of the three stepped forward,
Spoke to the other five,
“Speak softer friends, and fear not,
Your Duke has arrived.”

“It is Hywell,” the first shadow said,
His voice fallen to a blur,
“I know your voice, My Lord,
The boat awaits, good Sir.”      

“Ah! Powys, I see it’s you,
Good Man, I’m glad to see,
You have met me here,
Do you follow where I lead?”

Powys threw back a hood,
To show a stern veneer,
“I will follow you to Hades, Sir,
And by any path you steer.”

“Good Man, but let’s hurry,
For I feel a strange unease,
All is queerly still tonight,
Quick now, if you please.”

So eight shadows moved then,
From one darkness to another,
Working their way carefully,
Keeping as best they could to cover.

They passed down through,
The oldest part of Evan Town,
Set out on it's ancient hill -
To Old Port they climbed down.    

Down there was an ancient dock,
And against its rotting side,
A fishing boat bobbed about,
On the gentle moonlit tide.

"Halt now," Powys whispered,
His tone urgent and stiff,
"I see movement along the dock,
Watch and listen, close your lips!"

Eight stopped by some disused huts,
Watching from a distance,
“I see vagrant shadows,” Olaf said,
“Aboard the boat this instance!”

Tension was in his voice,
All the others could feel it.
“Surely there is not just now,
A caddish plan to steal it!”

“Quick now!” the Duke hissed,
“We must stop them at their deed!”
And so five shadows pressed forth,
They pressed forth at speed.

Daggers were drawn as they ran,
But not ever quick enough,
For smoke began to rise,
In flame-lit pungent puffs.

Flames began to lick and spit,
Then came a mighty roar,
Shadows jumped to the dock,
And turned to watch in awe;

There they stood, scoundrels three,
Not seeing Powys and his Men,
Powys was soon upon them:
“What have you done, my friends?”

The three now turned in horror,
To see blades caught in flickering flames,
“You scoundrels,” Powys cried in fury,
“Who has put you to this shame?”

“It's not us,” two quickly cried,
And cowered to the back,
Leaving one shadow to face,
Five men tensioned to attack.

“Remove your hood,” Powys snarled,
“Show the beast within!”
The Butler reluctant, showed his face,
The color draining from his skin.

The Duke arrived, and betide,
His face was set in stone,
“So it’s my own Butler, I see,
I should have known.

‘I see now how Angus the Black,
Knows so much of what I do,
Oh Orwell, I suspected someone,
But I never suspected you.”

“I can explain, my Lord,”
Orwell wringed his hands,
“I’m sure when I explain it all,
You will understand.”

“Forget it, it is all over now!
You’ve cast the die and lost,
Powys quickly now,
Let these devils account the cost.”

Elena stood at the back,
With Olaf by her side,
“Where do they take those men?”
“Best not ask, my child.”

Elena stood and watched as flames,
Quickly consumed the boat,
She did not see Powys and his Men,
Cut three traitorous throats.

The Duke turned at last in anguish,
“Woe is close at hand,
We must find another boat,
Quickly! Do you understand?”

Powys dropped Orwell’s body,
Off the dock into the sea,
He turned and in grim voice, he said,
“No such boat is known to me!”

"Then we are truly foiled,"
The Duke cried, watching in painful ire,
As the fishing boat slid beneath the sea,
It's deck festooned with fire.
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Post by The Archet Bugle on Sun Jul 21, 2013 10:52 pm

10
Owen Alone


At first the boy was happy –
A fierce kind of joy! –
From many years of tribulation,
He felt release, that boy!

He stalked the streets of the town,
And impassioned, knew no fear,
But as the day drew long,
And the cool evening drew near,

The magnitude of what he’d done,
Began to dawn on him,
The dreadful vengeance of Aethelfane!
What dreadful vengeance win?

His situation dire,
He knew no careful plan,
To save him from that vengeance,
And with no answer close to hand,

Hungry now – he had not eaten
Since the night before! –
The boy slipped back to his cottage,
But revenge lay at his door.

It was Angwyn, a henchman,
Of Aethelfane the Cruel,
And when Owen saw him,
No need to be a fool.

But where would he go,
Where sneak the end of day?
There was only one place left to him,
And he glumly went that way.

For there was one secret place,
A cavern set by the sea,
Which once his Father showed him,
A place of safety,

Where his Father’s boat was anchored,
Protected from all weather,
Would Aethelfane find him there?
Owen grimaced: never!

But first! Provisions!
And the boy quickly reckoned,
Old Erik’s tavern was on the way,
An unlocked cellar beckoned!

It was not long thereafter,
That a boy with loaded sack,
Made his way through empty streets,
With a sack across his back;

Cured pork, hard bread, hearty ale,
A parsnip and turnip too,
Enough food to give him comfort,
For at least a day or two.
 
Through the town he made haste,
Past tavern, shop and house,
His every movement anxious now,
Like a nervous little mouse,

The boy slunk from place to place,
As townsfolk sealed their shutters,
Flinching at every sudden sound,
Every shout, or creak, or flutter.  

At the eastern point of town,
A shy gate opened on a wood,
A wood on a rocky headland,
Where no house had ever stood.

For a moment Owen stopped,
Hesitating at the modest gate,
A few steps, it seemed to him,
A few steps unto his Fate!

What future lay ahead of him?
Would he become a wild beast?
Somehow he must eke out his days,
A feared outlaw... No! A petty thief!
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Post by The Archet Bugle on Mon Jul 22, 2013 12:30 am

11
Powys



“What now?” the Duke asked of no one,
His mind wandered on the silent brine,
As seabirds wheeled beneath the moon,
As if caught in frozen time.

“We must hide the girl,” Powys cried,
“And find some other means,
To take her to the Poet King,
It's still the only plan, it seems.”

“We must find some other boat,”
Olaf raised his voice in ire,
“Curse you Orwell, curse you twice,
Curse you to Hellish fire!”

The Duke woke as if from a dream,
“Yes, I must send out word at once,
But we must take every care,
And hide the Princess for the nonce.”

“We cannot hide her in the town,”
Powys offered his view,
“Duncan’s spies infest the town –
And who else but Orwell knew?”

“Your words ring with wisdom,”
Olaf answered in all gloom,
“Where is any place safe now –
No place but the moon?”

They all then looked on high,
To view the yellow globe,
And each delved into his mind,
For an answer probed.  

Powys started suddenly,
“There is a secret place I know,
Where once in the Goblin War,
A small group of men did go,

‘To hide from the Goblins,
When they overran Evan;
A man of our outlaw band -
Who’s soul now rests in Heaven -

Found it as a naive youth,
And when the Goblins invaded,
He hid us there in safety –
It was from there that we raided,

The Goblins day and night –
Every night and day! –
Until our armies won the War,
Until we drove those beasts away.”

“How secret can the place be?”
Olaf asked with narrowed eyes,
“How many know of this place,
You and who else, betides?”

“I am the last of that outlaw crew,"
Powys said in leaden voice,
And he breathed a heavy sigh,
“It seems we have little choice.

'But it is no easy place to reach,
And I must take the Princess alone,
As its best no one knows of it,
It’s best it stays unknown,

‘But I will meet you, my Duke,
Tomorrow at last cock crow,
At your house in the town,
By then I trust you’ll know,

‘If another boat has been found,
To take the girl away...”
“No, I don’t like it,”
Olaf was quick to complain,

For Elena was his charge,
And he feared to let her go.
“You must trust him,” Hywell said,
“Of all things this I know!”

And so Olaf must hug her quick,
Before Powys led her away,
He gave Elena a solemn kiss:
She saw his face was grey.  
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Post by The Archet Bugle on Mon Jul 22, 2013 10:28 am

12
By Rock and Stone


By rock and stone he swung,
In moonlight, perilous,
Over chasms like chimney stacks,
Across jagged gaps,

Under stones like ceilings,
Around corners sharp and sleek,
Rounded rock, razor stone,
By boulders in settings weak,

But Owen knew his way,
The cave was his refuge,
And his Father and taught him well,
Each headland subterfuge,

And at last he reached the cave,
Underneath a ceiling stone,
With dark water like to ink,
And a ledge lapped in briny foam.

He kept a lantern by the mouth,
Which lit the way ahead,
In flickering dark he came at last,
To his gently bobbing boat;

His Father’s boat! His talisman,
His touchstone, now his life,
He crawled onto its tiny deck,
And sat in russet light,

Pondering his day anew,
Fate had dealt a wicked hand -
And as he ate his stolen food -
He tried to understand,

But Fate has no reason,
It’s cruel or kind by whim,
And one can ever ever tell,
What Fate will ever bring.
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Post by azriel on Mon Jul 22, 2013 3:04 pm

This is beautiful !! A real epic Saga ! You made this up ? It feels as tho its been around, forever in time, read & re-read by Lord & peasant alike. Very Happy 

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Post by The Archet Bugle on Tue Jul 23, 2013 12:16 am

13
Elena


Powys had not come this way,
For a score of years, so it was late,
When after many misleading turns,
He found the modest gate.

“Ha! What I've been looking for!
And yet, it still will take some time,
To reach our destination,
And we must go as if we’re blind.

‘This wood lies thick with blackest ink,
And the paths won’t play us true,
For rock and stone play underfoot,
A game that we may easily lose."

“Why must we go this way?” she asked,
“Is there a cottage somewhere here?”
“A cottage?" he laughed,
"No, only rocks and trees I fear,

'And at the end a dire clifftop,
Treacherous, so often cruel,
Men I know have fallen there,
Lives that I will always rue.”

“Shall we sleep in some rocky hole?
Some damp hole fully thankless!”
Powys let out a gloomy laugh,
“Well, expect no comfy blankets.”

And with that he took her hand,
And stepped through the gate,
Elena could see nothing ahead,
But darkness black as slate.

Powys walked slowly now,
Feeling his way with careful step,
And though Elena stumbled often,
Her balance Powys kept.

Yes, he was so strong and steady,
And in his power she lay her trust,
"Even if I don't know him," she thought.
"Oh well, anyway, I must!"

Forever they journeyed then,
Or so to the girl it seemed,
All in total darkness,
Not even one moonbeam.

A Primeval place, unfriendly,
To mortal folk she thought,
Her mind imagined monsters,
But, strange! Her fear was at nought!

For she held the hand of a Man,
Whose touch was calm and warm;
And stranger still, it seemed to her,
That she had been reborn.

Yes, strange whims had come,
She did not even know this Man,
Nonetheless, she was led in joy,
Something she did not understand.

How long did they move,
Over perilous paths unseen?
Elena could never tell,
Her life, just then, a dream.

But time did pass - if out of mind! -
And weariness did befall,
That dreamy girl, who hand in hand,
Walked with a Hero tall...

Elena was nigh exhausted,
When at last: sudden light!
Beyond a cliff the yellow moon,
Hung benignly in the night.

Elena blinked, her mind confused,
For she saw no stair or cave,
Powys seemed to read her mind,
"We must climb down, I’m afraid.”

The girl pulled back in horror,
“But I never care for heights!
I refuse to climb down here,
Not by day and not by night!

‘I swear I have no head for this!
Oh please don’t make me die!”
“Never fear, I'll carry you,”
He said with a rueful smile.

“You must climb now upon my back,
And cling onto my neck...
Easy now! You'll choke me,
Loosen your hold, Princess!”

“Sorry,” Elena exclaimed,
“But I just know we will die.”
“Hold on, girl, all will be well!
Perhaps, just close your eyes.”

Then - with her arms about his neck
And her legs tight about his waist! -
She came to feel his animal strength,
As they descended without haste.

How strong his every move!
Cat-like he moved with sleekest care,
And Elena soon forgot her fears,
But of Powys she was aware!

Such a good and thoughtful man!
How sure! How very sure!  
His hair smelled of very Man!
His shoulders broad, what’s more!

This man was not of Royal Blood,
But he seemed a natural Prince,
Unbidden thoughts were in her head,
As they descended inch by inch.

Elena hardly knew at all,
That descent dangerous and fell,
Fatal moments came and went,
But with Elena all was well.

At last, Powys swung around a rock,
Into an opening dark as death,
“You can let go now,” he gasped,
As he tried to catch his breath.

“Elena!” Powys gasped anon,
“We're safe! You can let me go!”
Elena now did as he asked,
Though reluctantly and slow.

“Ignor the dark, for we'll be safe here.
We must crawl along this ledge,
Toward the back there is a place,
Where we can lay our heads....

‘But wait! What’s that?”
Powys whispered with a start.
“Can you hear that bumping noise?
That creaking in the dark?

‘Stay here, Princess,” Powys hissed,
“I must crawl ahead and see,
I suspect a boat lies up ahead,
Be silent! Wait for me!”

The darkness was so deeply dark,
Elena did not see him go,
But she heard his muted scrabblings,
And the rustle of his clothes.

In darkness she now sat alone,
As if she was in a darkly tomb,
But Powys was in her thoughts,
And her mind, it knew no gloom.
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Post by CC12 35 on Tue Jul 23, 2013 12:26 am

does it happen to anyone else or is it just me??? if so, why me???? these are the questions i wrestle with that torment my idle mind

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Post by Orwell on Tue Jul 23, 2013 1:21 am

Well, go and wrestle them somewhere else! Don't you know I'm trying to write an Epic Adventure Romance here, you Kook! Mad

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Post by The Archet Bugle on Tue Jul 23, 2013 3:45 am

14
Meeting in the Dark


Owen lay deep asleep,
On the floor of his boat,
In that watery cave, chill,
Wrapped in a tattered cloak.

He had never been a boy wont to dream,
But, oddly, he imagined,
Unfamiliar voices echoing,
From the mouth of the cavern.

A Man’s voice! A girl’s soft tones!
Owen stirred and almost woke,
He uneasily turned over....
But presently - close by! - a Man spoke.

“Who lies there in the dark?
Come on speak, what tell?”
Owen, still asleep, turned again,
His boat rocked on a gentle swell.

The voice spoke again,
“Hey! I know you’re there!”
And Owen sat up bolt upright,
Into the blackness stared.

He saw nothing, he heard nothing -
The darkness seemed so thick! -
Listening intently, still not sure,
If his mind was playing tricks.  

“I know you’re there,” the voice intoned,
Owen heard the slide of steel.
“Speak now, I am armed,
It’s a dagger that I wield.”

“You must name yourself,” Owen said,
“For I call this cave my own!”
And a brave reply it surely was,
Offered in a trembling tone;

And Owen wondered how it came,
That a Man of Aethelfane found him,
And fearfully, he realized,
There was no way to get around him,

For there was to one side the ledge,
To the other a hollow place,
Where Owen stored some things,
But which offered no escape.

“You’re but a boy,” the Man exclaimed,
“What does a boy do here?”
“I am no child, if that’s what you think,”
Owen bit back, forgetting fear.

“Look lad, I mean no disrespect,”
- the voice now seemed relieved -
“But this long has been a secret place,
And to find someone, hard to believe.”

“You are not from Aethelfane?
Something tells me that that's true.”
“Aethelfane, you say? Aethelfane?
Sounds like a Saxon I once knew.”

“Aye, he’s an Ostler in the town.”
“Ha! I do vaguely know of him,
A braggart if I’m right,
Aye! A scrawny pathetic thing.

‘I trust he seeks for you,
Why else hide away like this?
Have you stolen his favorite horse –
Or given his wife a kiss?”

“Make no jokes, he seeks me ill,
For I lashed him with a whip,
But he only got his just desserts,
Else I’d have felt its lick.”

The other laughed out loud,
“Good for you, my lad,
Aye! I clearly remember him,
He’s a coward and a cad.

‘No harm done, I dare to suggest,
And good you won the fight,
But tell me, have you a candle here,
Or a lantern to give us light?"

Soon enough, with lantern lit,
The two could properly meet,
And Owen saw a doughty Man,
Kind eyed, by no means meek.

“My name is Owen,” said one,
“Ha! Powys is my name.
Odd, I once knew an Owen in this place,
Is that a little strange?”

“You knew my Father, then,”
Owen burst out with joy.
“You knew this place, it can only be,
You were one of his outlaws!”

“Yes, we fought together,
That was many years ago –
Sadly long dead, I've heard...
And a son he left! I didn’t know.”

“What brings you here?”
Owen was keen to ask,
“For it’s odd to see someone here,
Scrabbling around in the dark.”

Powys laughed, a hearty laugh,
“As to that, I will not as yet say,
My business must remain a secret,
At least - for today.”

Just then out from beyond the lantern light,
A young girl now appeared,
And seeing her, Owen thought,
“This night gets no less queer.”
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Post by Orwell on Tue Jul 23, 2013 4:34 am

azriel wrote:This is beautiful !! A real epic Saga ! You made this up ? It feels as tho its been around, forever in time, read & re-read by Lord & peasant alike. Very Happy 

Thanks Azriel. Very Happy 

Is it easy to follow? Are the characters engaging at all? I've never tried writing a Verse epic before. Defeinitely new territory for me. Suspect 

But enjoying having a play.... Very Happy 

Bloody time consuming though! Mad 

I'm looking forward to exploring Owen and Elena's relationship. Nod

But it's hard to keep the rhyming kinda natural sounding... Banghead

Though when I go back over things, I gradually sought out rhythyms and meanings and such like. flower ...

But my oh my it's soooo frustrating at times. Extremely Crabbit

Ahh.. the drive to write...cheers 

Easier to drink, mind...  aaaah! that's better... drunken

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Post by Mrs Figg on Tue Jul 23, 2013 2:59 pm

ooooh caves, its a theme methinks. cheers 

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Post by The Archet Bugle on Wed Jul 24, 2013 12:06 am

15
Owen and Elena


In the lantern light she stood -
It flickered on her pretty face -
She thought it odd to see the boat,
Bobbing in this secret place;

“Who are you?” Elena asked,
As she spied the rustic lad.
"And why do you hide in a cave,
Have you done something truly bad?”

Owen felt her words and gaze,
And both seemed to criticize,
Her speech and garb seemed perfect,
Elegant and civilized,

And while one part of him was in awe,
To meet such a perfect girl,
Another was offended by
This ornament of a higher world,

And caught between conflicted thoughts,
No words from his mouth sprung.
Elena in all innocence asked,
“Oh Powys, is the poor boy deaf and dumb?”

“I can speak,” Owen blurted out,
“What! Do you think me a dolt?”
“I can’t say, but if you were born that way,
I would not hold you at fault.”

Now Elena by no means sought,
To make the boy feel bad,
But kind and thoughtful words sometimes
Can make a young boy mad.

“Well, who are you?” Owen asked,
His words dripping with contempt.
“Some fancy girl from up the town,
Dressed in braid and splashed in scent?”

Elena looked at Powys now,
“What is it that I’ve said?
This young boy seems so angry,
Is he crazed inside his head?

'But oh how sad it must be to live,
In such a horrid salty cave,
I never knew people could live
In such a horrid way!”

Owen could find no words,
His face turned to deepest red,
But Powys could but smile,
And he raised his hands and said,

“Steady lad, she means no harm,
We will sort it out, my friend,
But it’s late and we all need sleep,
Let’s all get some sleep, Owen.”

“Owen? Oh you have a name,”
Elena said - still with good intent -
“My name is Elena,” she greeted him,
And a most kind smile she sent.

But Owen only saw her smile,
As something cruel and mean,
And he turned away in rancour,
Madder than he had ever been.

Elena was troubled in her mind,
Not knowing what she’d done,
But Powys gave a rueful smirk, whispered,
“I fear here's a testy one!

‘But worry not, lets bed down,
For things said today,
May yet repair in daylight,
Is that not often the way?”

Powys then lent her his cloak,
And showed her a dry place,
Where she wrapped herself, exhausted,
And fell asleep apace.


Last edited by The Archet Bugle on Wed Jul 24, 2013 12:10 am; edited 2 times in total
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Post by Mrs Figg on Wed Jul 24, 2013 10:20 am

Orwell wrote:Well, go and wrestle them somewhere else! Don't you know I'm trying to write an Epic Adventure Romance here, you Kook! Mad

exactly my thoughts Suspect 

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Post by Mrs Figg on Wed Jul 24, 2013 10:25 am

This is Amazing. I love all the characters. Razz 

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Post by azriel on Wed Jul 24, 2013 11:23 am

Yes, Orwell, I can follow it very well Nod 
Yes, I can easily imagine how time consuming it is ! Nod 
Yes, the rhyming is spot on ! it flows eloquently ! Nod 
Yes, Im enjoying this no end ! Nod 
NO ! dont drink TO much ! Rolling Eyes  dont lose the "flow" ! Nod 
cheers 

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Post by Orwell on Wed Jul 24, 2013 3:06 pm

I'm kinda getting keen about the characters myself. They kind of go their own way as I write. It's like I'm learning stuff about them as I go, really. Actually, poetry happens like that to me. Could it be that 'Muse' thing, do you think? Suspect 

Thanks for the encouragement, ladies. Old fashioned fantasy romantic epics (in verse!) are not everyone's cup of tea, but call me an Old Fuddy Duddy Fogey, but I do like an old fashioned fantasy romantic epic (in verse!) Very Happy  


{{{And i'sn't it soooooo good that that pesty Kook has wandered off! Mad }}}

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Post by azriel on Wed Jul 24, 2013 9:03 pm

Your a fuddy duddy fogey ! & Im glad you are ! Very Happy 

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Post by The Archet Bugle on Wed Jul 24, 2013 11:51 pm

16
Green Morning


The shadows were green....
No! What was that?
Shadows weren’t green!
Quickly, up she sat.

She rubbed her cloggy eyes -
And saw a pure green glint,
On her swelling chamber floor,
Queer light that made her squint.

Her chamber, it seemed, was queerly changed,
“Nurse! Oh Nurse!” she called,
As she turned about to appraise,
Dark shadowed chamber walls.

And why did the floor move?
Like water by her bed!
She rubbed eyes again,
And she shook her head.

“’Nurse’?”  A boy’s voice asked,
“What do you mean?”
And it was then she saw
A boat among the green,

And it all came flooding back,
And Elena sighed in pain,
And wondered if she would ever see
Her comfy chamber again.

“Who is this nurse for whom you call?”
Owen asked with cool regard,
Arriving from where he sat,
By the cave mouth keeping guard.

“Oh it’s you, Boy!
Never mind, my head’s now clear,
I’ve never chanced to wake up,
In a watery cave, I fear.”

And she gave him a smile -
If somewhat weak -
For she had never ever,
Felt quite so bleak.

“I have a name,” Owen frowned.
Elena gasped, “I knew that fact,
Owen, wasn’t it? The Cavern Boy,
Yes, of course, I remember that!”

“I am not a 'Cavern Boy',” he replied,
His lips drawn tight and grim,
And Elena knew at once,
That she had again offended him.

“You must tell me what it is I say,
That gives you so much angst,
For I have never met a pauper before;
If you would, I’d give you thanks.”

Owen frowned and turned away,
And went back to where he’d come.
Elena sat in deep bewilderment,
“That boy is surely a strange one.”
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