Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Idylls of the Ring

I've been challenged to a poetry duel.

Now, I could probably still kick some you-know-what in a proper fencing match, despite age, steadily increasing roundliness and lack of practice; the killer instinct never really leaves one. But in poetry, I am a rank newbie and my challenger is one of those annoyingly talented people who keep themselves in peak condition year round.

Anyway, the challenge is one that leaves me clearly utterly outclassed. It is to re-imagine some story line from the Lord of the Rings and present it in the style of Tennyson's Idylls of the King.



Just to give me a snippet of what I'll be up against, I was offered:

Eowyn the fair, white Lady of the Mark,
Eomund's one daughter, priceless, being one,
Had hid her white hands under gloves of mail,
And her fair face close-visor'd with a helm,
To ride to war with Theoden the King
Unbidden, yea, against the old King's will ... '

Well, picked up a nice little three volume mini set of Idylls the other day in a Chester bookshop and read all through the wonderful story of Geraint and Enid, and realised that the fight is going to be over before it has begun. (I can certainly see why it appealed so to the neo-medievalist romantics of the Pre-Raphaelite school. I'd like it too if I had to live in squalid, sooty, industrialised Victorian England.)

It's OK. I'm just belligerent enough to take nearly any dare, no matter how sure I am to lose.

By all means, those poetically inclined, jump in, there are humiliations enough for everyone, I'm sure.


Anonymous said...

hey cool! you can _fence_? that explains a lot


Hilary Jane Margaret White said...

That's what Archbishop Prendergast said once.

blamin said...

Golom, slobering snivreling soot.

Frodo courage steadfastness illuminating.

We strive for one
We realize the other

blamin said...

OK, you dared me. That's my first - and maybe only.

Anonymous said...

What's your weapon, Hilary?