Lamenting Warrior seeks lyrically-minded storyteller, details within

D: A . . . A, I don’t quite know what to say.

A: Oh boy, here we go –

D: It’s just that you complained so bitterly. And really you just don’t have a poetic soul. How I ever landed in your mind is a mystery. I mean, sure you’re Irish, but you’re not even maudlin about it. Must be these warm Midwestern summers.

A: Is this you not knowing what to say? Really?

D: The words I’m looking for don’t come easy, A. I’m talking about the poem you wrote for the Community Storyboard, the one for this week’s prompt on angst and longing. I . . . I knew you could do it.

A: You did? Um . . . . Well – thank you, D. Of course, I think you had something to do with it. Angst and longing are rather your department.

D: And here I was trying to be complimentary.

A: And I’m not being disparaging – you have to admit that an epic life comes with some angst. Longing. Pain.

D: All right, you can stop now. I get it.

A: So you really liked it?

D: Don’t fish, woman.

A: Well, it was worth a try. Thanks, D. Stay tuned for Mairead’s version.

D: Mairead?! Wait, A – I don’t think this is such a good idea! I’m not ready!

A: I’m sorry D, I think you’re cutting out. I must be entering a canyon or something – see ya, D!

D: A! We are not on cell phones. I’m right here! A? A? Where’d you go?!

Photo courtesy Google Images
Photo courtesy Google Images

Warrior’s Lament

(Originally posted on The Community Storyboard)

Mists of time creep by

Filling my senses

And dulling my pain.

I hope.

Once you did love me

A promise you gave

For your kiss, I longed.

I dream.

The burden of honor

The call of my clan

Did tear us apart.

I fight.

Brothers surround me

But always alone

Mired in treachery.

I rage.

Though victory was ours

Too few did return

I was lost to you then.

I weep.

I left to wander

To court jealous gods

History, myth and legend.

I live.

One day I’ll return

Old hurts forgotten

I will hold you and whisper,

My love.

 A Explains the Tale

In writing the draft of Book 1, I “discovered” that there was a very old ballad (or rather, a lyrical oral story) that told the story of a warrior prince and his lost-love. It’s referenced throughout the last half and parts of it are even recited (although, at the moment it looks more like “put pretty words here”). Essentially, “The Ballad of Dubhshíth and Mairead” is a hand-me-down historical clue to D’s life.

Since I have no idea how to write a ballad, let alone compose lyrically-pleasing prose in Irish/Pict/Scot oral storytelling form, I was concerned. Concerned, but really determined to twist my brain around something resembling poetry. I did a small amount of research – more of which is needed – but really, the “Angst and Longing” prompt at the CSB came at the perfect moment.

My brain, and maybe a bit of D’s heart, tossed enough words on the page to make four poems that will make up a compendium of sources for the ballad.The ballad itself will tell the tale of D’s first life – his very own historical record. Realistically, I only need a few lines lifted from the ballad itself and the tone of “Mairead’s Song” (debuting later this week . . . maybe) to make Book 1 work, but I want it all. I want it to function almost as though it were one of the many research books I keep on my desk. I like to think of it as another way to gain insight into a temperament and personality that, 9 times out of 10, remains a mystery to me.

D: So you admit that you don’t give me my due.

A: I didn’t say—

D: Admit it.

A: No.

D: A!

A: Fine. I’ll admit it, if you admit that my head isn’t an empty wasteland compared to what Your Magnificence has come to expect.

D: So we’re agreeing to disagree then, hm? All right. I can work with that.

A: (Sigh). Cheers, D.


Published by Katie Sullivan

Descended of pirates and revolutionaries, Katie Sullivan is a lover and student of all things Irish. Born in the States, she is a dual US/Irish citizen, and studied history and politics at University College, Dublin – although, at the time, she seriously considered switching to law, if only so she could attend lectures at the castle on campus. She lives in Milwaukee with her daughter, two cats and a pesky character in her head named D (but you can call him Dubh). Her first series, The Changelings Saga, a young adult historical fantasy trilogy is available on Amazon. She can be found writing with said character at her blog, The D/A Dialogues.

14 thoughts on “Lamenting Warrior seeks lyrically-minded storyteller, details within

  1. With havin so much written content do you ever run into any problems of plagorism or copyright violation?
    My site has a lot of exclusive content I’ve either written myself or outsourced but it looks like a lot
    of it is popping it up all over the web without my
    authorization. Do you know any techniques to help prevent content
    from being stolen? I’d truly appreciate it.


  2. This is a wonderful post, Katie. It was a pleasure to read the Warrior’s Lament, the banter between you and D, the explanation of the ballad. Like Charles, I become more eager for your book with every post you write 🙂


    1. Thank you! He is sort of right – I don’t give him his full due on the blog. It’s my way of coping with just how deep he is. Plus he’s an annoying know-it-all. I wonder, when/if the book comes out, if anyone would recognize him, beyond the name!


    1. Thank you, Ionia!
      (personally, I’ve been asking the universe for a couple million in unmarked bills and perhaps some bullion, but I’ll settle for the Druid, too!)


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