I was touched when His Majesty Eckehard asked me to write a memorial poem upon the untimely passing of Duchess Denise Duvalier. While I had not had the honor of meeting her myself, her reputation proceeded her, and I wanted to write something that honored her and her legacy and gave comfort to those left behind. Because I also knew that the poem would be read before a tournament (originally the Rose Tournament at War of the Wings, then rescheduled to Crown Tournament), I also wanted to keep it short so that no-one was overcome before competing. I hope that I did her memory honor.
To saddened hearts and aching souls we sing
Of sorrow slowly walking in our midst.
From loss and love does grief and mourning spring;
If tears should tender flow, do not resist.
We sing of tireless heart and thoughtful hand
That brightly bore the crown with grace in bloom
And planted joy and warmth across the land.
This royal Rose was plucked unkindly soon.
May mem’ry last forever and a day:
Cherish Countess Denise Duvalier.
I was honored to be asked to write the scroll text for Aemelia Rosa’s Pelican! Kolfinna Valravn did a beautiful job with the scroll, and it was super fun discussing our collab and making sure it fit the recipient. We agreed that the scroll text should be written like prose in a block (which is fully period and also let me write more words, ha!), but it was in fact a Petrarchan sonnet with some prose for the end matter:
Attend, Atlantia, to thy Queen and King
To hear of duty and dedication true
Steadfast service in many colors and hues
From Aemilia Rosa eternal springs.
No scribe or poet can number everything:
Though uncountable hours and great works ensued,
Sweet sacrifice and struggles were not eschewed.
She does not recoil from sharp arrows and slings.
Now in this sweet Barony of Hills so Bright
Eckehard and Jane make known Our will as the Crown:
What now must she become but a vulning Peer?
A gentle Pelican with wide wings of white,
When Fiery Trials and Royal Archers abound.
May all rejoice from what is presented here!
Thus also do We award her the sole and exclusive right to bear arms, to wit: Vert, a domestic cat’s head cabossed ermine maintaining in its mouth an artist’s paintbrush fesswise argent, a bordure ermine. Done by Our hands this day, October 2, A.S. LVI. In witness thereof, I Triton Herald set my hand by these letters Patent.