For Lyonsmarche’s Autumn/Winter event, “Tavern Day,” I was asked to pen a sonnet for the winner of the rapier tournament. A sonnet is an Italian form of poetry that originated in the 1200s and grew in popularity through the centuries. Shakespeare took the sonnet, made it his own, and now it is most commonly known as an English form of poetry.

I hedged the rules a bit (no iambic pentameter for me, thanks), but I followed the traditional Elizabethan rhyme scheme as closely as possible. The challenge was I had to include the name of the recipient (who happened to be my husband), the event name, and event location… as well as details about the fighting. 🙂

My fighter’s hands are skillful made
Yet not for script or building craftily —
None better built to wield the blade,
The rapier elegant, with cunning strategy.
So like the shark of fearsome face,
Cadet James Elryc wears bloody red,
And fearlessly takes his rightful place
At Tavern Day, all honor to defend.
My fighter doth claim the field,
An awesome study in grace so deadly;
With mighty dagger, sword, and shield
He owns and triumphs over lesser parries.
A noble victor of Lyonsmarche,
Full of chivalry and virtuous heart.

(Nov. 2014, by HL Emma Godwif, KBC An Tir)

Photo by Alvar Guerro. HL Michael of Lancaster vs. Lord James Elryc.
Photo by Lord Alvar Guerro. HL Michael of Lancaster vs. Lord James Elryc.

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