Bereft of habit,
the tonsured friar gazes.
Bereft of habit,
the tonsured friar gazes.
Their gaze uplifted
eyes, ears and hearts opened,
smiling in their joy.
His message of peace and love,
a lesson for all nations.
Rather eerie but this his tale for today.
British Summer Time, the evenings are lighter and the weather is colder. How apt. I love the lighter evenings as after work it’s possible to get out into the countryside, weather permitting, and do all the things you have been sitting in the lounge vowing you would do as soon as it was light enough after the day’s work is done. Today was such, my first foray out to try and capture a church spire in the evening gold. Sadly the church itself was closed but that is just a sad reflection of the times in which we live. Still, if you are looking for a little quiet contemplation and a moment away from traffic, hustle and bustle, a churchyard serves it’s purpose well. The church in question is in a little village called Wilby on the outskirts of Wellingborough and I was attracted to it’s spire with it’s magnificent ornate buttresses way up in the sky. Sources tell me that this church dedicated to St. Mary dates from the thirteenth century but was extensively rebuilt in 1879. The unique spire was built during the Decorated period and shows many features pleasing to the enthusiast.
One noticeable thing about this evening was the sighting of a bright, white grave marker close to the path leading to the porch. It is an official war-grave, probably the only one I have ever seen in all my years. It commemorates the death of a RAF pilot who died at the age of 22. Curiously it was dated on my birthday, but in 1944. So much has been said about their sacrifice but seeing a single marker like this lends a stark reality to the horror of war.
her by the hand
he led her into the stream,
the crowd began to chant the psalms.
Before the altar,
the couple will say, “I do.”
a vow before God
A time of despair
lay cold breath upon the land.
While Lord King Arthur
retired within his chamber,
sat alone, in cuckold’s grief.
could he gain, from grieving wife,
or courtly knights,
till from the high battlements
joyful cries when far below
knelt his once favourite knight
who, though hermit now
pledged his service and his sword
to the man whom once he wronged.
Thus was pestilence once more,
purged from proud, fair Albion.
We dismounted. Staring in awe at the scene before us we knelt down and gave thanks to the Lord. Our quest had not been in vain. Our beloved Emperor Hadrian would reward us well for had we not found the place they must surely have called Golgotha.
We entered and searched diligently but there was nothing to suggest that the sect known as Christians had interfered with it in any way. It was empty, the mud floor overgrown with brush. It had probably been ransacked many decades previously but we could not afford to take any chances.
We would find lodgings in the village and leave a sentry here while we sent dispatches to Rome. Nothing was to be disturbed on pain of death. All we could do now was wait until we learnt our beloved Emperor’s wishes for this place that seemed to hold so much significance for the followers of this so-called Messiah.
On our first attempt
to justify existence
he was not convinced.
The creator of all things
chose to become destroyer.
We come together,
rejoice in communion,
partake of the host.
Rituals and practices
bringing comfort to many.
Stained marble stones hide bleached bones.
A place of sadness.
From his raised throne at the head of the hall, the Compte LaReine turned to his master chevalier.
“I’ll see them now, my three guests.”
The heavy oak doors at the end of the hall swung back and three white robed knights were invited into the long, wood-panelled hall. They had surrendered their swords and shields, distinctively marked with the red long-halted cross.
The three approached the dais and bowed low before the Count. Dubois, their spokesman started to introduce himself and his companions but was rudely interrupted by a loud, bellowing voice demanding the reason for their apparent desertion from the Templar order.
Unbeknown to them the Count was dismayed that they had not been willing to divulge the whereabouts of the legendary famed Templar treasure. He knew that the Order had lost favour and wished to curry favour with King Phillip. After secret negotiations he had agreed that the three, accused of heresy, although falsely, would be confined for two days and without trial, put to death as ordered by the King.
“Take them below,” he thundered and roughly, without ceremony, they were lead away. Two days later they were unceremoniously put to death and their bodies taken and placed in a shallow grave in the forest to be forgotten.
So they remained for the next two centuries until the Pope was persuaded to grant a pardon to all the French Templars and throughout the country, the bodies were exhumed where known and re-interred beneath marker stones in the territories where they were once revered for their piety and fighting prowess.
These stones remain a place of pilgrimage, although more often a destination for treasure hunters and the curious.