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Friday, May 22, 2015

From the Desert Unexpected

From the desert unexpected
came a Knight disarmed,
not unarmed, but one armed.

Said the Knight, “I’ve crossed the expanse
and now I’m asking
to serve this country’s king.”

The King with scepter and with crown
remained unimpressed,
and two questions pressed:

“What service could you offer me?
How could you be armed
when you have but one arm?”

And the court began to laugh,
they were held in thrall
as their jeers filled the hall.

Said the Knight, “Still I’d make my pledge.”
Said the Knight, “Right words
can wound as much as swords.”

Just then the Queen Mother spoke up,
“let us have temperance
and patient remembrance,

for our religion and our faith
is in charity,
kindness and clarity.”

Eight soldiers of the King did spurn
her words and did plan
to kill the one-armed man.

“He must not be allowed to live;
we will have revenge,
against him be avenged.”

The aged Hermit came inside
to give his counsel
to the royal council:

“This brave Paladin comes from God,
and what is missing
is not cause for your dismissing.”

Then one of the rebellious knights,
moved in his heart,
repented of his part

in the murderous plan to kill
the courageous Knight
in the dark, placid night.

The Bishop lifted up his arms
to speak a benison
upon this denizen:

“May the Lord of our bright heaven,
give this knight the words
to obviate our swords.”

The errant knights did seethe and burn
in anger and ire
to set their hate afire.

“Rejoin us,” they urged the Soldier
who’d repented of
his evil, turned to love.

But he refused to join their band.
They killed him outright,
the Queen, too, that same night.

And the one-armed Knight they murdered,
stabbed him while he slept.
For these deaths no one wept.

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Jeff Carter's books on Goodreads
Muted Hosannas Muted Hosannas
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