The Black Knight

Once upon a time
In a far and distant land,
There lived a fair young maiden,
In a castle grand.

She was riding in the forest
One bright and sunny day
When the King himself
Happened by her way.

She looked into his eyes,
And instantly she knew
That she was in love,
And this love was true.

The King then took her hand
And softly he did say,
"What a stroke of fortune
I should happen by your way;

For I come in search
Of a maiden fair and true
To rule my kingdom with me:
That maiden, she is you."

They parted with a kiss,
And went their separate ways;
He promised they would meet
In two nights and two days.

The Maiden then went home
And her heart was light,
For she was in love:
She dreamed of him that night.

Next morning came the king
To the Maiden's castle fair,
For the Maiden's father
Wished to see him there.

The Maiden hid and listened
To what the men would say,
For she loved the King
As much, and more, that day.

"I have," said her father,
"A daughter you should meet.
She has eyes of icy blue
And a smile that is so sweet . . ."

"I'm sorry," said the King,
"But I love another.
And I am . . . betrothed:
I can love no other."

When the Maiden heard this
Her heart broke right in two.
She knew she loved the King;
She had thought he loved her, too.

The King then left the castle,
Going swiftly on his way.
The Maiden ran to her chamber:
Where, for a while, she would stay.

The Maiden cried and cried,
The tears falling down like rain.
Then she finally thought
How to win him back again.

The King loved battles and fighting,
And so she would try to be
The greatest knight in the land
And then he would love her, you see.

The Maiden took two of her servants,
And left in the dark of the night;
Her parents would not understand,
Would not let the Maiden fight.

She settled down in a castle
On a little island fair.
And whenever she climbed to the tower,
She could see the King's castle from there.

She spent a year in training,
Becoming the best she could be.
She would prove herself in a tournament
For the King, and all, to see.

Finally came the day,
She would win the King's love back.
She dressed herself in armour
All polished, and shiny, and black.

She rode into town that morning,
And everyone stopped to stare:
Who was this mysterious knight
Who never before had been there?

And when they watched the tournament,
Oh, what a wondrous sight!
For nobody won more contests
Than the one they called the Black Knight.

The King smiled as he watched
The greatest knight he had seen,
And the Knight smiled as she saw
At the King's side, there was no queen.

The king went to congratulate
The Knight, who had won fair,
Although the King pondered this thought:
A visor he always did wear.

The King befriended the Knight
Over the next few days,
Even though he wondered
At the Knight's mysterious ways.

One day he confided
Of a maiden he did love
Who was missing, and feared,
To be in Heaven above.

The Maiden-knight she listened
With a sad and broken heart;
For the missing one, she sounded,
Like the King's love from the start.

Meanwhile, the King's Friend
Watched with growing fear
As the King's new friend
Took his position here:

Look at all the power
One has as King's best friend.
If this stranger knight took over,
The Friend's easy life would end.

So he started thinking,
"Who is this mysterious man?
Is he some sort of criminal,
Who had taken some gold, and then ran?"

He went to the Black Knight's castle,
And saw the King's Love there,
And finally he realized
The Knight was the Maiden fair!

A plan formed in his mind then,
He knew just what to do.
He could get revenge
By distorting what was true.

The King's Friend said to the King,
"Sire, what a sight I have seen!
The Black Knight has taken the girl
Who should have been your queen!

A prisoner, she is, on the island,
Locked in his castle fair;
I know this for I saw
Both the Knight and she there."

The King's mind, it was troubled,
When he heard the news.
The Knight had been his friend;
Now he had different views.

The King had been betrayed;
His heart was filled with pain.
He only said one thing:
"The Black Knight must be slain."

The King rode to the island,
An army at his back,
"Come out, traitor, and fight me
Or I will be forced to attack.

You have stolen the Maiden,
The one that I love true,
And kept her locked up in your castle:
Now I shall have to kill you."

The Maiden heard his words
And tears fell from her eyes:
If he found out she had lied,
It is she he would despise.

"Better to die at the hand
Of the only one you love,
And spend all of eternity
In a better place, above,

Than to spend a lifetime
So far, and yet so near,
Watching your true love kiss
Another that he loves dear."

So she went outside
All dressed in armour black
All prepared to die:
Then was the attack.

The King's sword hit her armour
With a crashing sound.
The Maiden-knight fell over
And lay there on the ground.

"Ah ha! Now I will kill you,
Take my Love, and leave this place.
But first, one thing to do:
I wish to see your face."

And so he took the helmet
Off the Black Knight's head,
And when he saw the face
His heart was filled with dread.

"What, now, have I done?
I thought I acted right,
But now I have killed my Love,
Disguised as the Black Knight!

Oh, this sorrowful day,
If only I had known!
For she is the only one
I wish to share my throne!"

The Maiden came awake then
And looked into his eyes.
"I love you, King," she said,
"Though 'tis I that you despise."

"What strange thought is this?
It is you that I hold dear;
And I would do anything
Just to have you near."

The King and Maiden kissed then,
And knew their love was true.
Then they looked at each other
And both said, "I love you."

And so the two were married
They took their vows, and then,
The Maiden made a promise
She would never deceive him again.


knights.jpg (10831 bytes)

Spring 1995



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Property of Suzanne P. Currie. Updated July 03, 2007 10:37 PM -0400.