J.B. Lawrence: ‘Destiny’


As Harold drew his burnished sword of war,
With battle-eyes he peered from Caldbec Hill,
Before him, on the wave-kissed pebbled shore,
The Conqueror: his army poised to kill.

The King his words of brave defiance flung,
The last said in the Anglo-Saxon tongue,
Which from that day fell silent and unknown,
All native conversation overthrown.

Accursed those born by Fortune’s lottery
When placid centuries are breached by gore,
Their wretched lives the pith of History
As Chaos cleaves through custom, life and law:
And conquest’s carnage stamps the place and date
Tomorrow’s Realm is cast by Arms and Fate.

J. B. Lawrence

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