For Ieuen MacIllmore, third Baron Septentria

Master Hector of the Black Height, July AS XXXI (1997)

Old men may bare their arms pale scars to show,

As England's Hal supposedly once said.

We Northmen too the martial field do know,

We too have sallied forth, have bruised and bled.

More proud than scars the warriors' refrain:

"I won these scars beside my Baron, Ieuen."

 

Great riches are some noble patrons' gift,

Great hoards of gold and gems by pound and score.

Some treasures men may harbour with grim thrift,

But these are petty prizes, for far more

Are prized, are guarded at great cost and pain,

Those rings that once were gifts of Baron Ieuen.

 

Sage judgements are not barristers' alone;

What tongues of fire speak from a tome of law?

Far better is the wisdom we have known

In ursine courts, where justice fair we saw.

We gave our trust to one wise and humane

And never came to doubt our Baron Ieuen.

 

This land is stronger than in seasons past;

These oldest lands with new hearts are imbued.

With folk like these Septentria shall last,

Strong arms at work, hearts lifted and renewed.

What Prince had lands so rich? What King's domain

Could match rich fields well-tilled by Baron Ieuen?

 

And now you would away on far crusade

To seek a peace your soul here cannot find.

Such choice each man in his life must have made;

We bid you go, placate your heart and mind

But leaving know that should you call again,

Proud scarlet swords would draw for Baron Ieuen