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Oft there comes a wind to tell a tale,
and oft am I without the wherewithal,
to set my ship on voyage forth to sail
beyond the sight of sheets, where ink will fall.

But now, I must recite in measured verse
a tale, yet famous, but in me sublime.
I hope I do not make this tale too terse’
and spoil a song in less majestic mime.

So shall I tell the tale of Inklindon,
of merry inky folk and of their cares,
and when at length, my verse is spent and done,
I shall move on and leave you with my wares.

Where to begin, but in the poet's mind,
where oft runs chaos in his most youthful spring
and order where before none was to find,
must there encroach, and with her beauty bring.

So was I turned, by fate, or will or chance,
or providence, 'tis hard to rule her out,
I must endeavour to this dream enhance
and cast away my creed, my self, my doubt.

Then drops an inkblot on this vacant sheet,
the first of life this universe shall see,
and with it laughter, and the sound of feet,
behold, the merry inkfolk now shall be!

But look, they stand alone in disarray,
distraught, for nought, their little world permits.
My children robbed of sense of night or day,
are lost in space, in time and my dull wit.

So quick should I discover their first need,
and quickly scribble 'bout their tiny feet,
a land where plants shall grow and beasts should feed.
There now stands Inkisle doodled on my sheet.

So gay and highly blessed beyond compare,
they make their home, and live and love and sing,
Fast gladdened, soon I drift beyond all care,
while merry inksongs in my ears ring.

The happy inkfolk, dance with bird and beast,
and in the sea sand play, with fishes swim.
'neath leaves of plants they gather and they feast.
And give me thanks for acting on my whim.

But soon they tire, and soon they break their backs,
for work or joy, must soon come to an end,
they long for rest, of which I made them lack
Without a night, all joy of strength is spent.

So now I cast about my matted cloth,
and see them fall like creatures under spell.
For what is night, if not some fairy loth
imposed, that boisterous meddling shall be quell'd.

So sleep them deep, my silly inkfolklings,
beyond my thought, where godlets cannot reach.
This mystery is often most inspiring,
for in these scapes of dreams, true angels teach.

So lost in slumber, each must set their aims,
and as the lands about in silence dwell,
all ponder fortunes, meek or loft and vain
far deeper in the haunts of sleepy spells.

At last, I tire of indulgent snores,
and so I wake them up with thundering rain.
They start, and yawn, and gather to their chores,
and multiply, as grows a paper stain.

But now, their joys of need be put on hold,
and they must know a thing or two of fear.
From slumbering deeps, a thing is made. Behold!
Borne from their dreams, a beast most foul and drear!

So dire is he, that never is he named.
A foul creature stalks the woods at night.
His voice is thunder that cannot be tamed.
His shadow falls, and valiant fail in fright.

He tramples o'er their hamlets and their fields,
and people fall, where last his shadow fell,
A mighty power of death, this demon wields.
Misfortune must have cast this cruel spell.

On Inkblot Hill, this menace draws he nigh,
the rains are violent fits of red ink spray.
The wind in mourning heaves a tearful sigh
as this fell monster watches on his prey.

Is this the end that comes to dear Inkland,
that in her own fears drown, condemned to fade?
Will justice bless at once a valiant hand,
to wrench our lands from death's entombing shade?

But look, beyond the sheet, an Inkfolk's rise
permits our hope some chance of second life.
He comes, unnamed, before our near demise,
our tears are dry, but secret joy is rife.

He strides from sea to walk on plain and hill.
He comes, upon his brow a valiant crown
about, defeated victims joy and thrill.
His mien is fierce, he wears a warrior's frown.

With shield and lance, he stands before his foe
Whom, now is clear, is but our very fear
This secret does our valiant hero know
and uses to dispel the horror drear.

Quick was the battle waged for Inkland's fate,
and as the rise, so great the sudden fall.
The spectre downed, the being of woe and hate
was vanquished ere the coming of nightfall.

Now shouts abrupt rise up in spells of joy
and carried shoulder high, our valiant knight.
with instruments of praise, inklings employ
to celebrate his bravery and his might.

But though their world was saved by mighty one,
his stay was short, he did not tarry long,
For he had come in need, his deed was done,
they must remember him in tale and song.

Review Request (Intensity): 
I want the raw truth, feel free to knock me on my back
Review Request (Direction): 
How was my language use?
What did you think of the rhythm or pattern or pacing?
How does this theme appeal to you?
Last few words: 
This poem was written some months ago, in a short burst of inspiration and silliness, all in one sitting. It needs a lot of work, I'm inclined to think, to make it work. The story should be clear to the reader. Pardon the stilted language: I was in "that" mood when I wrote this.
Editing stage: 


For something that came up in a moment's burst of inspiration, this is wonderful. Thanks for appreciating it Lonnie :)

No verse is free for the man who wants to do a good job. - TS Eliot

author comment

I really enjoyed this story, thank you

well written, with a rhyme and meter that carried me along with the tale, and where you have mixed the meter generally moves in smooth transitions

there were however a few hiccups (to my ear at least)

Will it, that I may make not this tale terse’ – very mixed meter to my ear ... I think you need to stick to the iambic here
 - perhaps ‘I hope I do not make this tale too terse’

‘I shall move on and leave you with my ware’ - the previous ‘s’ of ‘cares’ in the rhyming verse of this stanza really stands out to me here – I usually say one can get away with it, and i think you do in the various other places you've slipped in an 's' in rhyme throughout the rest of the write, but for some reason here I notice it 
 - perhaps make it ‘wares’ or change ‘care’ to ‘cares’

‘where oft | runs cha | -os in | his most | youth -ful | spring’ – this verse is too long with five and a half feet, but not a feminine line to my ear

‘This mystery is oft most inspiring’ - missing an iamb

perhaps ‘This mystery is often most inspiring’

'At last, I tire of indulgent snores' – I think ‘tire’ is one iamb… making this line one short (the scansion is out to my ear at least)

‘My children robbed of sense of night or day,
are lost in space, in time and my dull wit.’ - I really like these lines
as well as
‘the rains are violent fits of red ink spray.
The wind in mourning heaves a tearful sigh’

one typo ‘and uses to dispell the horror drear’ - dispel

great job
love judy

'Each for the joy of the working, and each, in his separate star,
shall draw the Thing as he sees It, for the God of Things as They are.'
(Rudyard Kipling)

Your comment has been very informative. It's funny how I don't "see" certain things until someone else points them out. Like you did with the line: "I hope I do not make this tale too terse"

Where I can easily do, I'll edit the poem and correct it as you've pointed out. I'll check up on the rest later.

This poem just got a much needed upgrade. :)

No verse is free for the man who wants to do a good job. - TS Eliot

author comment

Other than the occasionally tweaking of some meter problems (Judy pointed out the worst, maybe later I'll note the ones that bugged me) I don't believe the poem needs any major overhaul. It is concise and fun in the extreme.
Now you have to start over with something new. One of the advantages of writing an epic so long it will never be completed is never starting over.

W. H. Snow

A poet is a nightingale, who sits in darkness and sings to cheer its own solitude with sweet sounds. Percy Bysshe Shelley

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This has just boosted my confidence, and I'll start looking at what I'm working on.

No verse is free for the man who wants to do a good job. - TS Eliot

author comment
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