The Foreign

Across our land from East to west,
We built a great walled defense,
From the foreign who live beyond divide,
Of whom we do not speak their kind.
With thirst of blood and human flesh,
We stay behind our safety fence.
But when we cross, to our back it looms,
The wall becomes our grave and tomb.

This is my F poem for the A to Z challenge.

My A-Z is based on Northumberland, and the myths and monsters that lurk within. You may want to read a couple other poems in my challenge to get the gist.

This one comes from the story of Hadrian’s wall, and the fear of those that lurked beyond it. It’s hugely inspired by The wall in the game of thrones series and books, but it’s our wall and we had one first!!!


Lady Etal

In the ancient towns of Ford and Etal,
A fable whispered throughout the people,
Of lovers on 2 sides of war,
But brought together by love they bore,
Her father, sir and Etal’s Lord,
Sent his daughter to castle ford,
And said the man she wished to wed,
Was enemy and he’d take his head,
But to her father, she begged and plead’
Till he finally then agreed,
Bring him here at the hour of four,
And bring him to the castle door,
But when they met and kissed her cheek,
The gates closed and arrows unsheathed,
Where they stood in lovers arms,
And murdered by her fathers armed.
Whose ghost are seen in their embrace,
Trapped between the murder gates.

This is my E poem for the A to Z challenge.

My A-Z is based on Northumberland, and the myths and monsters that lurk within.

During a school trip to Ford and Etal, many many moons ago. I was told this story when visiting one of Northumberland’s many castles. The trouble is I don’t remember which castle it was. But basically we were told of a woman who fell for her father’s enemy, due to the shame she caused the family she, and lover were murdered trapped between the portcullises. Now whether it is true, I’m unsure but it makes a cracking story!

My poems kind of lead onto one another so I do suggest you read the poem before it to get the gist.

The Braves

Standing just at one foot tall,
Guarding keeps and castle walls,
The tribe of which the moat is hold,
Are littles like the garden gnome.
With spears in hand, align in rows,
Await to stab intruders toes.
These tiny brave, soldiered men,
As old as which what they defend,
The wars have gone a battle ghost,
But still the braves defend their post.
Their joints they’ve seized and turned t’ stone,
Til a day may come to fight for home.

This is my B poem for the A to Z challenge.

My A-Z is based on Northumberland, and the myths and monsters that lurk within.
The idea of The Braves came to me when I was writing The Untold Stories of Scotland and it never came to anything until now. The idea is a small army so old they have turned to stone, or gnomes. We have alot of castles up in Northumberland, and even more Braves.

My poems kind of lead onto one another so I do suggest you read the poem before it to get the gist.

A Storm of Swords – George R. R. Martin

***No Spoiling Ahead***

Storm of Swords

The third book from the ‘A song of Ice and fire’ series By George R. R. Martin, A Storm of Swords carries on from where A Clash of Kings left us hanging.

With Series 3 of A Game of Thrones upon us, I couldn’t wait to finish the book. And it took some finishing. A book so vast that it can be bought in 2 halves and the series itself will also be split. It’s took me a few months to finish and my, my has it been emotional.

Book 1, A Game of Thrones, like the Series, sets the scene in Westeros, it introduces you to families and the houses. We learn of the Lannisters, The Baratheons who hold the Iron throne and rule the Seven Kingdoms, The Starks of Winterfell in the North, and the Targereons who ruled before being usurped. You are given first impressions of the characters, taking an instant dislike to the Lannisters and rooting for the Starks, but how this will all change in the books ahead.

Book 2, A Clash of Kings, introduces new characters and families, we learn more of the lesser houses and their alliances. We find the 7 Kingdoms separated by the death of King Robert Baratheon, with 4 possibly 5 people feeling they have rights to the throne, you expect this to be something that isn’t settled amicably, and of course the book ends with a battle of the Black Water, where 2 kings clash in a fight for Kings Landing.

With the first 2 books, merely a build up, people moving about and preparing for war, building their armies and defending. You expect book 3, A Storm of Swords to be a big one, with battles, beheading and more betrayal. But this book is more than you could ever even take a stab at. You develop a love for characters you were hoping would take a good bloody beating in the first 2, the chapters in the first 2 which were slightly a little boring (I’m talking about Catelyn and Sansa) are some of the best, with every chapter leaving you in suspense, by ending with a shocker.

In true George R R Martin Style there are deaths (a-plenty) that are sudden and you just won’t see you coming, so expect many twists and turns in the upcoming series.

If you are a fan of the TV series, the books are not going to disappoint. They are everything the series is and more. I feel they are a tad more fantasy than the series, and one thing I love is you hear more stories, told as tales about aurochs and giants and dragons. The book plays with your emotions and I have high hopes for book 4; A Feast for Crows.

The only negative thing about A Storm if Swords was the amount of people in the book, for this I am glad I watched series 1 and 2 before reading, as I already had an understanding of the characters and had an image of what they look like. There is also a section in the back of the book explaining who people are and I do have to refer to this often.

In summary, Im now a game of thrones geek, I even follow them on twitter and this book is by far the best thing I’ve read, I’d give it 10 out of 10 and I recommend you to read A Song of Ice and Fire series.

The Percy Lion

It’s said a lion roams the lands,
Since they came to Percy’s hands,
Of whom the lion took his name,
Has curl of tail and silver mane.
This lonely beast once was found,
Guarding territory of Alnwick grounds,
A roar feared by the southern crowd,
This lion’s pride is one and proud.
A humble Knight, a majestic thing,
They call old Percy, the Northern King.

The Lion is the sigil of the Percy Family, whose genealogy can be traced back almost 1000 years. The family still have residence in Alnwick Castle, but throughout history also occupied near-by Warkworth. Statues and coats of arms of the Lion can be seen throughout Northumberland.

This is part 2 of the Story of the Northlands! I hope you will follow to see more to come.


The Stories of Scotland

S is for… Stories of Scotland.

Most people are unaware of the dangers that lurk in the depth of Scotland. In 122 AD The Romans crossed the borders into Scotland and were attacked by three legged haggis. Those who survived later met their doom when they came across kelpies, loch Ness and worst of all… The Grock. The Roman Emperor Hadrian built his 80mile wall to protect people from what lurked in the lochs and hid in the highlands. But now, the wall has crumbled and the stories have become nothing but myths… Read my poem to find out the Truth!

The Untold Stories of Scotland