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Bardic Arts

The Ballad of Baron Martin

by
Alys Sheffield
July, 2005 (A.S. XL)

There once was a Baron they called Martin Gray
Whose brave deeds are often remembered today
He reigned o'er a tree-filled and mountainous land
But always alone, no one with him to stand.

          This bachelor baron he ruled without mate
          And many a maid tried to alter that state
          And though he might dally, his heart he denied
          He knew who he wanted to be by his side

For Martin had chanced to meet a fine lady
But she lived in Anjou across the far sea
And her hand was promised; her heart not her own
So sadly he left her and stayed on his throne

          He thought of her often and heaved many sighs
          He wore dark spectacles to shade his eyes
          And though there were some who might think him a rake
          He served well his Honor, for Chivalry's sake

As Baron, his Westermark's coffers grew large
And so to pay taxes, they travelled quite far
They greeted their King and their Queen somberly
And no-one expected what next they would see

          When granted permission The Mists to address
          He flung off his cloak and revealed his noblesse
          A dazzling doublet that outshown the moon
          And his codpiece with dingleballs made the knights swoon

To Farin and Ascelin, who ruled the Mists' land
Martin presented some gifts rare and grand:
A red, spicy sauce with a thin odd-shaped bread
"It comes from a land called 'Mehiko,'" he said.

          "'Chor Highnesses" he crowed, and watched them both cringe
          Then he bowed, and he doffed his straw hat trimmed with fringe
          His duties fulfilled, he reliquished his place
          He took up his sword and a commonor's space

Now meanwhile, in Anjou, his Chiara did dwell
She'd heard of his exploits, some grand and some, well...
But she had her duties to her hearth and home
Was bound to her land and unable to roam

          And so it did happen, her Lord went to War
          He didn't return, and her heart it was sore
          And then she remembered that first smitten glance,
          When that same Baron Martin first asked her to dance

And so Chiara journeyed to see a dear friend
Who lived near the Westermark lands in the 'fenn
They knew only shopping could make her feel right
And so, they dressed up, and they went to 12th Night

          While browsing through trinkets the lady did see
          Her dashing young Baron in his finery
          Though many a year had passed since they'd last met
          They each shared a longing they could not forget

To those who might think True Love's path doth run smooth
For Chiara and Martin, quite false this would prove
"But True Love must triumph," they both often said
And so their friends watched as they joyfully wed

          And when Martin was called by those Westermark lands
          To take his old Coronet into his hands
          With a glad heart he returned to his past
          His Baroness Chiara beside him at last


"This was written for Their Excellencies (then Baron & Baroness) Martin and Chiara, and originally performed at Westermark Madness 2005." -- Alys Sheffield


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