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Speeches, Songs, & Poetry
I give a lot of battlefield speeches to inspire the lads. Most are spur of the moment and lost to the wind once the battles begin. On occasion, I will craft one prior to the event and capture it here. The poems are for whatever inspires me. And the songs, well, they're for singing!

"God can't see us in the trees!"

East King's wood is this, and so
His Army today, a-hunting goes.
For on this day, declared, decreed -
Tis 'Dragon Season' amongst the trees.

Let us sally through the brush and bales
Collecting heads and Dragon tales.
Through their lines, we'll cut a swath.
Through their ranks, they'll know our wroth.

It will not fall easy, the serpent fat,
They promise a fight, thank God for that!
But they will bow on bended knee
For "God can't see us amongst the trees!"

For King and Queen and Crown we claim
This canopy wood in righteous name.
For, as Saint George with spear advance,
Go we to set these Dragons to lance!

And when the day at last is done
Let no doubt be cast who's lost and won.
We set upon this task with song
For, to the Tygers, these woods belong.

The speech I gave to the Eastern forces prior to the Pennsic 37 Woods Battle. It was later printed in Pikestaff:

August 2008

Song of the Pelican (song)
(give 'em the bird!)

And now process
Of bloody breast
From Service most renown...

The order's met
And firmly set
To pray thus of our Crown:

Give 'em The Bird
(Burdensome loads)
Give 'em The Bird
(Worthy of odes)
Give 'em The Bird, ...the Bird, ...the Bird
(Toward greatness [s]he goads)

(Teacher of war)
(Warlord a score)
(Marshal and more)

(In reaching our peak)
(The Great and the meek)
(His[Her] guidance we seek)

(Working the day)
(So we can all play)
(Sooth we say!)

Mistress Ainne of Framingham tasked me with writing this for the occasion of Duke Lucan von Drachenklaue being inducted into the Order of the Pelican.

I wrote it with the hopes that it could also be sung to others who are inducted by changing the chorus to fit the individual, or by writing traits that capture Pelican-like qualities.

If you come up with a line that works, send it to me and I will add it here. Please include your SCA name so that I can give you proper credit.
(mattyd AT mattyd DOT com)

January 2008

Not Just the List

Why, its been asked, do you submit to bruise?
Why pain and scars in conflict you choose?
Do you willingly battle for the right over wrong
When more often then not there's none to sing of your song?
We pluck up our courage and form in our ranks,
Fall into file and push out our flanks.
It's forward we step into hell and harms way.
And fight to the end that we may claim ours, this day.
As a hope for the better in this world ripe and thick
With ills such as slander, discourticy, and tricks.
It is not just the lists and the fighters it fields.
It is us, and us all, and the dream which we wield.
When our voices are silent and our bones remain not,
Perhaps the cause will be noted, perhaps deeds not forgot.

January 2008

Who Here Knows

Who here knows courage?
Who here knows courage??

In sooth,
every gauntlet should be thrust high,
and every voice sounding "Aye" till the very thundering of it echoes off the Blackstones!
For I know the blood that courses through this army...

The valiant,
the true,
the blue blood of the tyger that beats within the very heart of courage!

Such does our masters great pride,
and our consorts joyous elation at the abilities.

Every pike,
every glave,
every axe, maul, and sword
is wielded here by a titan.

Every shield I see: blazoned with greatness.

Every tabard,
every plume,
every mantle: the trappings of epic heroes.
The trappings of the East.

Let the sky roar and the very mountains tumble upon us,
I say this army will not be stirred from it course.
Upon these Eastern lines, our foes will find naught but their own ruin.
They will find their defeat.
They will find the pain, so carefully crafted,
and affectionately known in the Empire,
as the "the Army of the East"!

Now Captains,

order the ranks and unfurl our banners, brave upon the sky.
Let every soldier on this field loose the full might of the Tyger.
Let your deeds this day be a feast for the bards!

your souls belong to God,
your bodies to the King,
and your swords for St Michael and the East!

The speech I gave to the Army of the East prior to the 1st field battle at the final Battle of Bright Hills (Kingdom Crusades) where the East and Atlantia met. It was later printed in Pikestaff:

October 2007

A Tale of Diomedes and Kiena and the Chain that Binds Them
(True Story)

The herald shouted out to the assembling and meandering crowd, calling by name the two opponents who were to enter the list and meet in honorable combat. From the pavilions where two banners fluttered in the morning breeze came forth the Honorable Lady Kiena Stewart. In her gloved hand she held the end of a fine chain, and tethered to its other end, her Champion, Lord Diomedes Sebastianus. Diomedes was armed and armored with sword and shield in hand. Upon his shoulders and helm were the normal green horsehair topknots. Woven into the base of the topknot on his helm was a stem of daisies, recently tied there by Kiena's own hands.

Leading him into the list proper, she turned smiling to him and tied thistle and daisy flowers into the plume atop his helm, and then released the clasp of the chain, freeing Diomedes from its gentile restraint. The Marshal bade the fighters to pay the usual honors to Crown, the one who inspires, assembled crowd, and honorable opponent. Upon the issue of 'pay honor to the one who inspires you this day', Diomedes turned to Kiena and spoke.

"My Honorable Lady, this plume upon my right shoulder was sheared from me during the wall battle at Pennsic. It could not keep up with me and fell to the field. It was recovered by the worthy Cedric of Amorica who carried it until the field battles where it apparently could not keep up with him any longer and again fell to the field. No amount of searching could recover it and it was assumed lost. It was later discovered in the sewing basket of my Duchess, who returned it to me. Though we do not know how it got there, I know that it has on many occasions found its way back to me."

With this, Diomedes reached across and tore the plume from his shoulder. Handing it to the slightly stunned Kiena, he continued. "My only prayer is that in your hands I may always find my way back to you."

With this, Kiena removed a glove from her hand and tied it Diomedes pauldron where the plume had stood moments ago. She then spoke.

"Your dedication to this day and what we do inspires me to greater efforts and gives me great joy. As my champion today, I ask you to wear my glove as a symbol and token that you fight for me. Fight with the honor and prowess that I know you are. Be courageous and true and you will know great glory, no matter the outcome."

With a final moment, Diomedes turned his attentions from the radiant Kiena, and to the opponent across the list...

And so went the day, where each fight found Kiena leading her champion by chain into the lists, and inspiring and adorning him with words and additional stalks of daisies tied into his helmet plume. And with Diomedes reciting Latin phrases and oaths before turning his attentions to his next opponent.
SO inspired by "The White Company" was I, that I sat down for a long conversation with my Consort, Baroness Kiena Stewart, on how we could most display these tenants at the upcoming Tournaments that we plan on attending.

I am blessed to have a Consort who thinks much as I do, and we find ourselves often building upon one another's ideas.

This is the tale of our attendance at the King and Queen's Championship here in the East.

We planned the daisies, banners, chain, and glove tied to my shoulder. Tearing the plume and my speech was my surprise to her. I hope you wont think poorly of me if I say it had the desired effect upon my Consort and the crowd at hand.

I'm pretty sure I did a poor recant of the speech she gave me as she tied her glove to my shoulder. Her words were excellent.

We pride ourselves now on the flowers in my helmet and our chain the she uses to lead me to the lists when we attend tournaments.

September 2007

Heroes? Legions! (song)

Sing the song of Eastern Monarchs*
Rise, attend, declare for they.
Friend and ally both inspired.
Heroes? Legions!
Hear them say:

'S the Eastern way.
(repeat chorus)

Bathe in bur-ning Eastern fire,
Rush to join, as all brave may.
Forge your mettle in our pyre!
Heroes? Legions!
Hear them say:

'S the Eastern way.
(repeat chorus)

Rise above the din and ashes,
High as angles and survey,
Reigns the Tyger Rex triumphant!
Heroes? Legions!
Hear them say:

'S the Eastern way.
(repeat chorus till exunt)

(*can be replaced with any 2 syllable plural noun (armies, archers, etc)
You can hear the tune:
(Please forgive the quality, I was ill and sang it a tad fast on the recording.)

My Duke and Duchess truely love the East. It is this love that brought forth from me this song. I pray it was worthy of so fine a pair, and so great a Kingdom!

April 2007

Ballad of the Northern Army aka Shiny Objects (song)

We fight and we fight
and we drink and we drink and we drink

The Northern Army
Shiny objects make us happy
The Northern Army


Ode to the men of battalion, the salt of the earth Northers who make up the bulk of the Eastern Northern brigades, and don't know the meaning of the word quit.

August 2003

Why we fight?

For the burn of the battle,
the warm sting of rattan
both upon our shields, and in our nose.

We dance, and dare, and dream to the music in the madness of the melees, ripe with courage and glory.

The desperate stands and the spirited charges and swirling forays.

Following in fellowship to the frenzy of the fray, and the valor found in a moments exchange.

In that moment of creation in the flury of exchanges, we are tested -
by our opponent and more importantly, ourselves.

The three of us as one.

I love the SCA. I love the idea of integrity and chivalry and application of them to my life. I love learning about the peoples who came before us and who carved out the world we live in today. I love the bond of brotherhood that I have with my allies and opponents, and the overwhelmingly charitable nature that predominates the society. I love the taste of homemade adult beverages. I love beating the snot out of my friends with a stick.

June 2003

Cool things to say on the field

Evil Dead

"Captain Constantine, bring me forth into that tower!"

Pennsic 36 Castle (friendship) Battle. East/Mid attacking. We had broken into the right side of the castle, cutting off the right turret from the main part of the castle. As that turret was being mopped up, we realized that other Eastern/Mid forces were overruning the left side. This ment only the center tower remained. In the center tower, the Tuchx were holding steady. Some mixed group spearmen were sniping at the well fortified 'Chux. I called for a push, but a Middle Knight said "No, let the spears work." That would have been a fine plan anywhere except a timed battle where (they) defenders only got one life and (we) the attachers had 3, and most had used only one. It was then that I turned to Baron Constantine Von Drachenklaue and said
"Captain Constantine, bring me forth into that tower!"
The good Baron turned and ran up the stairs laying waste with sword and shield. A large portion of the Northern Army followed him. the battle ended a moment later. Good times!

Pennsic 36