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Skald of the Hills


He climbed to the hilltop,

To sing his king’s name,

Into the valley below,

So that all would hear,

The gods would bless

The travellers,

This pilgrimage,

As they trudged towards

The hope of a new land,

Praying that, in slowness,

They were at least fast enough.


He stood on the walls,

Bellowing song,

As they defended their home,

Hard won, long ago, founded

Far from their enemies grasp,

In an improbable basin

That could only have meant

They were favoured.


He sang as his son left,

Carrying his bags,

He hoped that

In a new life

Full of strangeness

And adventure,

He would listen

To the wind,

Hear a fragment

Of the song, on an

Erstwhile breeze,

And long for home.




This is dedicated to Jack Warren, fellow poet and Westcountry exile in Yorkshire 😉


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