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Anais Vionet Dec 2021
There are men (fair knights) who always get what they want.
If suddenly, Mr. Knight doesn’t get - say, a girl (the fair maiden) - he’s confused - what IS this, he wonders but he doesn’t KNOW. We will assume that getting this thing (girl in our example) is important to him.

Though his perceptual systems are still searching for answers he gets a sinking feeling because his limbic system reacts faster. It tells him something’s wrong - and it might be a predator (the dragon) so he starts sweating, he wasn’t prepared for a dragon - for chaos!

Why didn’t I get what I wanted, he will ask himself.
Maybe I’m not attractive? (That would be a horror of the 1st order)
Maybe this girl is trying to hurt me.. attack me? (the predator) - that may be a thought, but it’s unlikely and an unhealthy one.

Rejecting that he must ask himself questions: Did he come on too strong? Was he acting like a ****? Did he make too many assumptions? Am I well dressed? Did I shower today? (he smells his breath, checks himself in a mirror) He goes back over the encounter in his mind. Was he really trying his best?

If he decides, at this point, to go on, he must face his unrealized world in order to slay the dragon of chaos blocking him. The issue may be something outside of his normal, conceptual structure.

In that case, the problem is literally, the snake in the garden (his walled conceptual garden - his view of the world and his place in it).
Now this IS something - a snake in the garden - again he can give up - quit with this girl, quit trying period, quit dating, bathing, eating - that’s how the dragon can ****.

Failure is a message from the implicit world. The good news is - it’s a message from the real world and it may be a gift  - the best thing that ever happened to him. A slap that says: wake up, learn something, clue-in.

It can be a treasure, the gold that dragons hoard.
this is a piece inspired by a psychology class
Robert Watson Jul 2021
A monolithic sculpture stands upon a hill.
Ornate work of marble marks the artisan’s skill.
Clad as a knight of yore, with stony gaze held high.
Pilgrims travel from miles around to fall under his eye.

Epitome of courage, virtue, and respect
effused upon the villagers traits they should reflect.
Elements gnawed at the stone but failed to corrode
the manifold of lofty aims the knight would bestow.

Dark years beset the kingdom causing disarray-
Tyranny, vanity, and deceit led the people all astray.
Artisan's work above, a shining icon of probity.
A resolute bastion against the world’s impulsivity.

A day will come when the people reach distress;
crying out, they beseech the artisan’s redress,
but long has the craftsman been journeying far away
humbly allowing his handiwork, the message he conveys.
"Even darkness must pass. A new day will come. And when the sun shines it will shine out the clearer." - (Samwise) Peter Jackson.
Terra Levez Nov 2020
If readers were made rulers
Their knights would wield pens
Their wars fought on paper
And their subjects imaginary
We are all rulers aren't we?
sarah crouse Jul 2020
There once was a boy who feared himself.
So he went and hid in a big bookshelf.
He picked up a book and started to read
he saw the hero and followed his lead.
He read, he lived within these books
saw himself, the hero with the striking good looks.
He wanted to see it all he said
as the wonder and joy-filled up his head.
From world to world he travelled far
he sailed the seas and explored the stars.
He laughed, he cried and lived many lives
in his desperate quest to help him survive.
But everything has to come to an end
the books were done and all were read.
Just like that, he was alone again
alone with his thoughts, away from his men.
with no more books to save the knight,
he picked up a pen and started to write.
Michael R Burch Jun 2020
Sonnet: The Ruins of Balaclava
by Adam Mickiewicz (1798-1855)
loose translation/interpretation by Michael R. Burch

Oh, barren Crimean land, these dreary shades
of castles―once your indisputable pride―
are now where ghostly owls and lizards hide
as blackguards arm themselves for nightly raids.
Carved into marble, regal boasts were made!
Brave words on burnished armor, gilt-applied!
Now shattered splendors long since cast aside
beside the dead here also brokenly laid.
The ancient Greeks set shimmering marble here.
The Romans drove wild Mongol hordes to flight.
The Mussulman prayed eastward, day and night.
Now owls and dark-winged vultures watch and leer
as strange black banners, flapping overhead,
mark where the past piles high its nameless dead.

Adam Bernard Mickiewicz (1798-1855) is widely regarded as Poland’s greatest poet and as the national poet of Poland, Lithuania and Belarus. He was also a dramatist, essayist, publicist, translator, professor and political activist. As a principal figure in Polish Romanticism, Mickiewicz has been compared to Byron and Goethe. Keywords/Tags: Mickiewicz, Poland, Polish, Balaclava, Crimea, war, warfare, castle, castles, knight, knights, armor, Greeks, Rome, Romans, Mongols, Mussulman, Muslims, death, destruction, ruin, ruins, romantic, romanticism, sonnet, depression, sorrow, grave, violence, mrbtr
Michael R Burch Apr 2020
The Last Enchantment
by Michael R. Burch

Oh, Lancelot, my truest friend,
how time has thinned your ragged mane
and pinched your features; still you seem
though, much, much changed—somehow unchanged.

Your sword hand is, as ever, ready,
although the time for swords has passed.
Your eyes are fierce, and yet so steady
meeting mine ... you must not ask.

The time is not, nor ever shall be,
for Merlyn’s words were only words;
and now his last enchantment wanes,
and we must put aside our swords ...

Originally published by Trinacria. Keywords/Tags: Lancelot, King Arthur, Arthurian, Merlin, last enchantment, round table, knights, sword, swords, England, stone, Excalibur, chivalry, Camelot, loyalty, friendship, magic, prophecy, Once and future King, Celtic, Anglo-Saxon

Sun Poem
by Michael R. Burch

I have suffused myself in poetry
as a lizard basks, soaking up sun,
scales nakedly glinting; its glorious light
he understands—when it comes, it comes.

A flood of light leaches down to his bones,
his feral eye blinks—bold, curious, bright.

Now night and soon winter lie brooding, damp, chilling;
here shadows foretell the great darkness ahead.
Yet he stretches in rapture, his hot blood thrilling,
simple yet fierce on his hard stone bed,

his tongue flicking rhythms,
the sun—throbbing, spilling.
Michael R Burch Apr 2020
Morgause’s Song
by Michael R. Burch

Before he was my brother,
he was my lover,
though certainly not the best.

I found no joy
in that addled boy,
nor he at my breast.

Why him? Why him?
The years grow dim.
Now it’s harder and harder to say ...

Perhaps girls and boys
are the god’s toys
when the skies are gray.

Published by Celtic Twilight

Keywords/Tags: King Arthur, Arthurian, Morgause, Merlin, round table, knights, England, stone, Excalibur, chivalry, Camelot, Uther Pendragon, Colgrim, Saxon
Michael R Burch Apr 2020
It Is Not the Sword!
by Michael R. Burch

This poem illustrates the strong correlation between the names that appear in Welsh and Irish mythology. Much of this lore predates the Arthurian legends, and was assimilated as Arthur’s fame (and hyperbole) grew. Caladbolg is the name of a mythical Irish sword, while Caladvwlch is its Welsh equivalent. Caliburn and Excalibur are later variants.

“It is not the sword,
but the man,”
said Merlyn.
But the people demanded a sign—
the sword of Macsen Wledig,
Caladbolg, the “lightning-shard.”

“It is not the sword,
but the words men follow.”
Still, he set it in the stone
—Caladvwlch, the sword of kings—
and many a man did strive, and swore,
and many a man did moan.

But none could budge it from the stone.

“It is not the sword
or the strength,”
said Merlyn,
“that makes a man a king,
but the truth and the conviction
that ring in his iron word.”

“It is NOT the sword!”
cried Merlyn,
crowd-jostled, marveling
as Arthur drew forth Caliburn
with never a gasp,
with never a word,

and so became their king.

Published by Songs of Innocence, Neovictorian/Cochlea, Romantics Quarterly and Celtic Twilight. Keywords/Tags: King Arthur, Arthurian, Merlin, round table, knights, stone, sword, Excalibur, chivalry, Camelot, Uther Pendragon, England
Michael R Burch Apr 2020
Uther’s Last Battle
by Michael R. Burch

When Uther, the High King,
unable to walk, borne upon a litter
went to fight Colgrim, the Saxon King,
his legs were weak, and his visage bitter.
“Where is Merlyn, the sage?
For today I truly feel my age.”

All day long the battle raged
and the dragon banner was sorely pressed,
but the courage of Uther never waned
till the sun hung low upon the west.
“Oh, where is Merlyn to speak my doom,
for truly I feel the chill of the tomb.”

Then, with the battle almost lost
and the king besieged on every side,
a prince appeared, clad all in white,
and threw himself against the tide.
“Oh, where is Merlyn, who stole my son?
For, truly, now my life is done.”

Then Merlyn came unto the king
as the Saxons fled before a sword
that flashed like lightning in the hand
of a prince that day become a lord.
“Oh, Merlyn, speak not, for I see
my son has truly come to me.

And today I need no prophecy
to see how bright his days will be.”
So Uther, then, the valiant king
met his son, and kissed him twice—
the one, the first, the one, the last—
and smiled, and then his time was past.

Keywords/Tags: King Arthur, Arthurian, Merlin, round table, knights, England, Uther Pendragon
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