We caught king Lot in a haystack. Now we find his family inside the house. Gawain is telling his brothers an old, old story...
Today is poetry day in Belgium, and to honour that, I would like to share a piece of Arthurian poetry. It is a fragment from Alfred Tennyson's Passing of Arthur, and if I am entirely honest, it always makes me cry because it is so beautiful and sad. In fact, now that I think of it, tales of Arthur's end are responsible for about 90 % of the times fiction moves me to tears...
This episode takes place shortly after Gawain's death. King Arthur has received a message to warn him that while Gawain and he were in France to fight Lancelot, Mordred has seized the throne. Arthur hurries back to Britain, intending to battle Mordred at Camlann. On the eve of battle, the King is visited by Gawain's ghost, who tells him that the next day he will die.
That story which the bold Sir Bedivere,
First made and latest left of all the knights,
Told, when the man was no more than a voice
In the white winter of his age, to those
With whom he dwelt, new faces, other minds.
For on their march to westward, Bedivere,
Who slowly paced among the slumbering host,
Heard in his tent the moanings of the King:
"I found Him in the shining of the stars,
I mark'd Him in the flowering of His fields,
But in His ways with men I find Him not.
I waged His wars, and now I pass and die.
O me! for why is all around us here
As if some lesser god had made the world,
But had not force to shape it as he would,
Till the High God behold it from beyond,
And enter it, and make it beautiful?
Or else as if the world were wholly fair,
But that these eyes of men are dense and dim,
And have not power to see it as it is:
Perchance, because we see not to the close;—
For I, being simple, thought to work His will,
And have but stricken with the sword in vain;
And all whereon I lean'd in wife and friend
Is traitor to my peace, and all my realm
Reels back into the beast, and is no more.
My God, thou hast forgotten me in my death:
Nay—God my Christ—I pass but shall not die."
- Alfred, Lord Tennyson
from Idylls of the King
THE STORY SO FAR:
Part I: The Darkest Hour
One woman and two men. This is where our story starts.
1-3 - 4-6 - 7-9 - 10-12 - 13-15 - 16-18 - 19-21 - 22-24 - 25-27 - 28-31 - 32-35 - 36-40 - 41-44 - 45-47 - 48-50 - 51-53 - 54-57 - 58-60 - 61-64 - 65-66 - 67-69 - 70-73 - 74-75 - 76-81 - 82-84 - 85-87 - 88-90 - 91-92 - 93-97 - 98-101 - 102-103 - 104-108 - 109-111 - 112-114 - 115-119
Interlude: The Sword of Kings
Brothers and Sisters
Blood runs thicker than you would think.
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