Alone on Stamford Bridge

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Alone on Stamford Bridge

Post by John T Mainer on Wed Sep 07, 2011 7:16 pm

To claim the throne of England
The Heathen king had come
To claim what had been promised
Beneath the shield of peace

At Stamford bridge they met him
His Anglo-Saxon vassles
Full the promised tribute
With spear and arrow paid

Beneath the storm of arrows
Before the hedge of iron
The Heathen king was pierced
Fine robes not heavy mail

Broken was their army
By the Anglo-Saxon might
Charged their horses forward
Across the Stamford Bridge

Although his king was fallen
And he bore neither shield nor mail
His Huscarl’s oath was given
So one Northman barred the way

Clad in hard-won bearskins
Gift-rings upon his arms
Great axe he swung before him
For the honour of his lord

First they sent their horsemen
Until he built a wall of dead
And then the armoured spearmen
He hewed to fill the gaps

One man against an army
One Heathen against the cross
The Saxon force retreated
From this bridge they dared not cross

The blacked the sky with arrows
And speared from underneath the bridge
Proud lords and armoured champions
Stood and watched a hero fall

Boasting of their victory
Where a Heathen king was felled
The victor’s still remember
The Northman at the Bridge.

-Dedicated to the memory of the lone Huscarl whose brave defense at Stamford bridge after the death of King Harald Hardraada was so shocking to the Anglo-Saxon victors in 1066, they included his heroism in the Anglo-Saxon chronicle; a year other folks remember only for the Anglo Saxon later loss at Hastings.

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"Let justice be done, though the heavens fall."
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