mercredi, mai 17, 2006

The Cipher of Leonardo


Myn gentil rederes alle, ich dide thynke ich wolde teste out sum newe materiale on yow bifor ich do trye to publishe yt. Ich haue layde plannes for to enditen what ich do calle a ‘romaunce thrillere’ – all of the actioune of a romaunce, but wyth sum puzzle solvynge and mysteriousness and sum thynge of an expose of the chirche. Ich do calle yt ‘The Ciphere of Leonardo,’ and ich thynke yt ‘has legges,’ as they saye. Here ich shal pooste a ‘tesere’ for thee – thys ys the firste fitt of the poeme:

HEERE BEGYNNETH THE MOOST THRILLINGE ROMAUNCE OF THE CIPHRE OF LEONARDO

Oon night ther forwarde dide ystagger fayntynge
A man hight Saunierye who knewe of payntynges
Thurgh archwaye vaulted of the Louvre he passid
And seised at nerest canvass as yf gassid;
A Carravage yt was, wyth gilded frame,
Ovt from the walle thys man dide tere the same.
In hepe beneth the canvas doun yfallen
From far aweye he herde thalarme to callen.
He thoght hym ‘ich yet lyve’ and caste his eyen
Arounde the roome a refuge for to spyen.
As crawlede he forth a voys dide saye ‘Halt, stop!’
So close yt was! Yn feere hys jawe did drop.
And ther thurgh irene barres he sawe a man
-for, ich sholde saye, accordynge to the plan
Of Palais-Louvres securitee ful grete
By cause of the alarum from lyne VIII
Ther hadde ydropped a gate of muchel strengthe
That trappid Saunierye yn that roomes lengthe.
The man on thothir syde (art thou stille wyth me?)
Was an albino, ful pale and straunge to se
For nothynge striketh feere yn mortal soules
Lyk to the pale! A boate ful of hooles
Ich rather wolde thurgh sharke-rich watirs stere
Than oones come to an albino neere!
A pistole from his coat the pale man drewe
And aymed yt at Saunieyre the trewe.
In accent odd, ‘Was litel vse to runne,’
He sayde, ‘Now wher ys yt? Or get the gunne!’
‘Tolde thee I haue,’ the gode man dide proteste
‘Of what thou spekst ich haue nat the fainteste’
‘Thou liest’ thalbino sayde, ‘Thou and thy brotheres
Kepen sum thynge that by ryght longeth to otheres.’
Adrenalin in Saunieyres veynes dide synge
‘How coud he,’ thoght he then, ‘knowe of thys thynge?’
‘Tonighte,’ pale weirdo seyde, ‘the rightful men
Thys thynge in seisin holden shal ayein –
Telle forth and lyfsblud for thynselfe reservest
But telle me nat and by my gunne thou stervest.’
So Sauyniere lyk Sinon storye tolde
False as the devil, and seyde yt forth ful bolde
For he hadde yt rehersd many a yeer
(Ye notice, o myn gentil rederes deere,
Ich telle yow nat of what thys ‘thyng’ might be-
Yt ys a tricke poetic vsid by me
To kepe yow yn confusioun most plesynge
Thurgh alle thys vague and nonspecific tesyng).
So, wyth the tale of thys McGuffin tolde
Sire Lilye-White did logh, ‘Ich knowe of oold
Thys storye false, for oothirs haue yt seyde’
Sauyniere dide gaspe and blaunchen lyk a mayde:
Yf pale-face spoke the treuthe, than al the thre
Of senechaux (aske me nat what they be)
Had dyede the deeth and tolde the selfsame tale.
Was no man evir yn gretere nede of ale
Than thys Sauyniere, he was so reuthe.
‘Whan thou art dede, no man shal knowe the treuthe
But me,’ thalbino seyde, and shot Sauyniere.
The bullete sange yts hotte waye thurgh the aire
And lodged yn hys cheste, o payne so soore!
And caspere raysed the gunne for yet oon moore.
And yet a clikke, no bullet yet remayneth
For whiche to dryve a passage thurgh hys brayne.
‘Payne ys goode,’ the pale man seyde to hym
And disappearede. By cause he knewe of werre
And eek of woundes he long agoon had seene
Sauyniere coud rekne he hadde minutes XV
Bifor the gunshot wolde bryng forth his deeth
And so he cast aboute wyth hys last breeth
To fynde whiche payntynge nereby he colde see
Well suited to sum light cryptographie
With which to leave sum puzzle or sum clewe
For to be solved by Hanks and Miss Tatou.

28 Comments:

Blogger A White Bear said...

BSL! I am speechless. I would be laughing to the point of pain if I weren't so distracted by the genius of your versification.

mercredi, 17 mai, 2006  
Anonymous Sophia said...

Oh man. So awesome. Sadly, I can't translate that into Middle English, but you get the point. *g*

mercredi, 17 mai, 2006  
Blogger FSJL said...

Dan Chavcer ben a poette of renown
Bettir by far than thatte hacke Dan Brouun.

mercredi, 17 mai, 2006  
Blogger Take Me As I Come Cause I Cant Stay Long said...

Brilliant!

mercredi, 17 mai, 2006  
Anonymous Ye secretaire of ye presse of kynge richarrde said...

Ywis thatte Maistre Chavcer should indite that the San Graal and the Sang Real ben the same thing. Thvs, goode kynge Rjcharde ben the heir nat juste of the kingdomes of Engelonde, Fraunce, and Irlonde, butte of alle Christendoom.

jeudi, 18 mai, 2006  
Anonymous geoff from oz said...

Thou art a mischievous knave of brilliance supreme.

jeudi, 18 mai, 2006  
Anonymous Etienne said...

SUPERB. Just change the last word - Tautou is the actress, Tatou is the vertically challenged person from Fantasy Island "De plane, Boss, de plane!"

jeudi, 18 mai, 2006  
Blogger Geoffrey Chaucer said...

"SUPERB. Just change the last word - Tautou is the actress, Tatou is the vertically challenged person from Fantasy Island "De plane, Boss, de plane!""

Tee hee! An error that saith muche abovte myn entertainemente preferaunces. Ich shal chaunge yt when time shal allowe. Grant merci for drawynge that mistake to my attencioun.

Le Vostre
GC

jeudi, 18 mai, 2006  
Anonymous Jes said...

lol.

jeudi, 18 mai, 2006  
Anonymous Anonyme said...

No mention of the pale fellow's startling resemblance to the poet as a younger man?

jeudi, 18 mai, 2006  
Anonymous Anonyme said...

You are my new fucking hero.

Richard http://rwillmsen.livejournal.com

jeudi, 18 mai, 2006  
Anonymous Anonyme said...

Myn cher geoffroy, wouldst get mee wythe chylde? For Ich wouldst have thine baybye.

vendredi, 19 mai, 2006  
Anonymous Anonyme said...

audibile ridendus.

vendredi, 19 mai, 2006  
Blogger Madeleine Robins said...

Verily, I am in awe. Master Chaucer, this is brilliance.

samedi, 20 mai, 2006  
Anonymous reflecked said...

I am officially in love.

Thank you, thank you, thankyou.

samedi, 20 mai, 2006  
Blogger Soupdragon said...

You are a gent, and a star.
Genius blog.

dimanche, 21 mai, 2006  
Anonymous Anonyme said...

Of that long book, you chose to cast in verse,
The best of it; the plot soon gets much worse.

dimanche, 21 mai, 2006  
Blogger Sally's Life said...

In adoration, may I link thy blog from myne ?

dimanche, 21 mai, 2006  
Blogger MBB said...

I love it!!!!!!!!!!!!

dimanche, 21 mai, 2006  
Anonymous Anonyme said...

I believe that it was England not the UK. The UK came into being after the Lord Protector annexed
Ireland.

SFP

dimanche, 21 mai, 2006  
Anonymous Anonyme said...

I hate this blog.
I have an exam tomorrow and I have just spent approximately an hour reading this blog.
Curse the author.
:(

dimanche, 21 mai, 2006  
Blogger R J Stove said...

Puissant Geoffroy, noble bloggeur, thou rockest.

lundi, 22 mai, 2006  
Blogger sweet-avocado said...

I wish I had thought of this... Your versification is brilliant!

lundi, 22 mai, 2006  
Anonymous Christi Richardson said...

I LOVETH your blog, Chaucer...I would fair give thee an award just for "The cipher of Leonardo", but sadly, I lack one. I am fair enjoying learning the language of they clime, as well.

mardi, 06 juin, 2006  
Anonymous pasioun4misterye said...

O hou this misterye yntrigues me! Yt ys wonderfull to rede thys tayl thrugh ayeyn and understaynd yt yn a newe wai. I am quyte fonde of thus novele and wishe I culde lyve a dryven lyfe lyke that...

dimanche, 04 février, 2007  
Anonymous Rys13 said...

Ich am amazede. Yow haseth doon Dan Brouun justice. Yt is lyke yow art thou, but betir. Ich fynd hyt funye thatte Dan Brouun haseth ben rumourede to ben steelynge, and yow yt pere haveth the stoury same. Ich choseth thou versoune.

lundi, 05 février, 2007  
Anonymous Nate said...

Truly, do Ich wishe yow had writen the moovie "The Cipher of Leonardo", not "thatte hacke Dan Brouun" as oon othere commentaire seid. Also, thy referense to "Caspere" didst brynge a smyl to myne face. Bravo!

mercredi, 21 février, 2007  
Anonymous Ashley Spalds said...

Ich to am a Leanardo fanne. Ich founde it to be veri passiounate. Ich am noot to goode at understonding yowr langage but Ich thynke yow are veri talented. What is yowr favorite payntnyng?

mercredi, 21 février, 2007  

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