The Bride


There is poetry written for many occasions; poetry written for recital in chambers and on stages. Poetry written for love, poetry written to celebrate life. Poetry told by candlelight or in sunlight.
This isn't any of those. This is the kind of verse recited by grim drunk sailors, well past midnight, in dark taverns when storms are blowing up.

This is in standard meter – standard for hymns. It also happens to be the meter for The Animals version of House of the Rising Sun.


The Bride

The Bride stood on the Moonlit Shore
Her cutlass in her hand
The Blood that scattered from its edge
Shone Darkly on the sand

Her Marriage Gown was torn and shred
And Paler was her skin
Her Darkly Shattered eyes saw nought
But Dam'ned Darkened Sin

Her Wedding Day'd been black as pitch
The Groom at Altar sill
Where the King's men left him Murdered
Now cold and dead and still

The Groom did rob a tax man's purse
To pay for Wedding's Feast
King's soldiers came and cut him down
As if he were a beast

Then The Bride they'd took, mistreated
And called a common whore
Her screams and cries of Agony
Heard through the shuttered door

But at Mourn's light she'd found her feet
Then she had found her Blade
And wreaked an Awful Vengeance
With sleeping soldiers slayed

The Bride, she ran on through the day
To seek a place for Peace
A place of Solace what she sought
At dark she reached the Seas

With Bitter Tears and gasping breath
She staggered on the sand
With but a single Grave-Dark thought,
Gript Hanger in her hand

The Bride, she thought to put her Point
Into her Broken Heart
To stop the Pain and Agony
Of Cupid's painful dart

But 'fore she sent herself away
A voice called from the Sea
Calling "Nay, fair Lass! Stay your hand!
And come away with me!"

A dusky Mermaid called to land
From 'neath the Darkened Deep
"Fare not into that peaceful place
Of Endless Quiet Sleep"

"Why not?" in pain, The Bride, she cried
To Sylph atop the Wave
"No life to live, no one to Love
There's nothing left to save!"

The Sea Maid smiled, Night-Grim and Dark
"A burning pain be quenched
In a Bloody peace succored
With Sword, Fire and Revenge!"

"You're not alone, O Beaten Bride
Others share your plight.
The King, he Slay'ed my People
O'er Jealousy and Spite"

The Mermaid bared her savage fangs
"I, the last, seek amend
My world, their cannon shattered
My People they did rend"

The Bride she hiked her Corpse-White dress
And waded in the Wave
She clasped a dusky scaly hand
Far colder than the Grave

"Lead on" She said in Tomb-ish tone
"Death must await me still
For if Revenge is near to hand
Then I will find the Will"

The Sea Witch raised her scaly hands
Began to move in time
With water's Cadence of the Seas
Intoned her song of rhyme

"Come on to me, O Death Ship, come!
From Deathly wayward shoals
Your sides of long lost Shattered Dreams
Your crew, Tormented Souls"

"Rise up O Changling heartless craft
Rise up from Ocean deep
We've many lives to bring to end
Dark Promises to keep"

The Mermaid's supple magic dance
Called the Plague Ship on
From Ocean's grip and sandy floor
A blackened dreadful swan

Her decks of Jet with Shadows swarmed
A teeming Nightmare crew
Of Things that slipped and crawled and pulled
Until the sails flew

The sails screamed their Agony
Across the endless night
For not of canvas were they made
But soulless Nameless Wights

They stretched and pulled at their posts
Now eager for to run
And fly now the Darkling vessel
Away from Morning's Sun

"In Night she'll run across the seas,
From daylight she will hide
Bring Death to those that brought us pain"
Said Mermaid to The Bride.

"She's got no name, my beauty she,
Nor Captain nor a Mate"
The Bride, she laughed and raised her sword
"I name her Bloody Hate!"

"I am her Master now!" She cried
She gripped the Sea Maid's hair
She kissed her full and smiled at her
"And now we'll teach them Fear!"

She leaped up to the fo'c'sle
And threw her wedding dress
Up in the air, up in the sky
And watched it come to rest

Her skin was in that moment
As silk and shadow clad
Wraith'd and wrapped in cloud of dark
By ghosts and ghasts she had

Her cloak was long, a Tortured Soul
Her breeks of Hanged Men's hair
Those Gloves of Virgin's Mournful Cries
A shirt of Widow's Tears

Her laughter rang Mad and Bloody
She called her orders out
"Starboard! Heave now! And hold the line!
We're headed to the South!"

Legend tells of a blackened path
Of the vengeful twain
Of crossing endless Crimson seas
They sought to mend their Pain

The Siren's Song called out from fog
Pulled men into a trance
Then Hate pulled up aside them
The Bride began her Dance

No one could fault the sailors brave
Who faced her awful Wrath
But no man could stay her footsteps
On dark and vengeful path

Her cutlass keened her Fury
In whirling steely haze
The Sea Maid supped on Human flesh
Of men trapt in her Gaze

The decks awash in surging Blood
As high as top of boot
The pair took full Fury's vengeance
Of gold and life and loot

The King, he sat on golden throne
Heard news of shattered hulls
Of ships adrift with rigging gone
And Pyramids of Skulls

No merchants sought the vicious pair
King's warships were their prey
A sole survivor from each ship
The Mermaid did not slay

Half-mad and blind and near their death
They begged to bring their tale
As Herald's warning to the King
Of Coming of the Sail

"They come, They Come on Storm Black Wind"
Each man would Weep and Cry
The message that they had to bring
Before allowed to Die

The Warning of the Blood-Mad Bride
Along with scaled Mate
The slashing blade, the flashing claws
The Wailing call of Hate

Then, lo, the Fated day did come
On wings of Tempest fly
The Baleful ship then did appear
Under Shade-filled Skies

No Crossbones nor a Jolie Rouge
No flag on vessel's crest
Just strands of Bone-White lace and silk
A tattered Wedding Dress

The Bride she stepped up on the shore
Her Boots left blood-filled tracks
Behind her Shadows Fell came on
In pulsing surging Packs

His armies forth, the King he sent
They stood in serried line
Swords did gleam and armor shine
Men waited for their sign

Not one of them would live the day
As Shadowed waves did crash
Hate's fearsome crew lunged on ahead
To bite and hack and slash

She, through the human wreckage came
Strode fiery Spectral Bride
Her cutlass gleamed and shimmered
In her hand at her side

Great walls of stone she stood before
But then she reached her hand
Great walls of stone did shook and groan
And crumbled into sand

The Bride, at last, above him stood
He cowered on the ground
With the Mermaid softly singing
An awful baleful sound

What Tortures then, what did She do?
No one could truly say
But Flesh was Flayed from his Soul
His Bones were stripped away

Now lonely does a Lantern hang
On black and dreadful craft
King's Soul is doomed forever
To light the vessel's path

Of the end there's nothing heard
Save sailors' tales of fright
Nevermore to touch the shore
They sail the Endless Night


Post Production Notes:

As always, thanks to The Missus; she enjoys a good ghost story in any form.
Special thank you to blackrandi for walking me through the rules of poetry again – it's been over thirty years since I wrote anything in verse, so this probably would ended up a limerick without her help.

I just wanted to try something different and was thinking of writing a little bit of humorous doggerel. Obviously, it went dark fairly quickly.

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heartvstein, zeropatience and 11 other people favorited this poem! 

by Anonymous

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by zeropatience10/06/18

A toast to you good sir.

The Original Jolly Corks Toast

Now is the hour when Elkdom's tower
is darkened by the shroud of night,
And father time on his silver chime
Tolls off each moment's flight.

In Cloistered halls each Elkmore...

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by Insignia08/27/18

Just a light little ditty

To set your course by in the mornin'. Lets let out some canvas and make a run to Tortugas ya dogs.

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by lc69hunter07/15/18
by wrangler6107/14/18


Awesome and outstanding

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by Anonymous07/09/18

As i was reading it, I got into the 'story', if you will, and imagined the type of person who might, well, use it, I guess. Honestly, I feel like the Scottish king from Brave, his voice would work verymore...

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