samedi, juillet 15, 2006

A Pyrates Lyf for Chaucer

Arrrrrgh, ye scurvie swabbes. Yt ys ich, Geoffrey Chaucer, Drede Pyrate and Scourge of the Ocean See.

Or at leest so ich was ‘til yestermorne, whanne ich did a-laste returne to my litel hous in Kente aftir a manye a daye. Ich hadde but scarcelie opnede the dore, yet right anon Philippa did seise me and remoue my ear-ringes and dide commaunde me to sitte yn the tubbe un til the smelle of the salt-see and rum had departed fro me. She hath taken my parrot and putte it in a cage, the which newe settlement pleseth the bridde right nat. She did telle me that ich maye nevir ayein weare myn eye-patch if evir ich wisshe to lay by her.

How did this hap? Ich shal tell yow.

My journeiinge dide commence yn the accustomed maner, wyth muche planninge and manye lettres of passage from My Lorde Kyng Richarde. Ich was sente wyth my Lord Sir Edward de Berkeley to Lumbardye, ther to make negociacioun wyth Lord Bernabo about aide for Engelond in the grete werres with Fraunce. Our companie dide trauel by shippe along the costes, and dide reche fayre Milan. Al thogh trauelinge ys a payne in my butte, and my luggage was y-lost IV tymes along the weye, yt was all prettie okaye. By Seynt Isidore, ther ys a grand librarie and a fayre at Milan – thos tyrantz do loue their bookes. Ich red muche of the werke of Petrak and Boccace, and took notez this tyme to avoide charges of plagiarisme.

But by my feith, plagiarisme sholde haue yben the leeste of my worries. On the waye home, yn the greye morwenynge, the shipman espyede two blakke sayles at the horizon. “Alak!” quod he “We al shal be yslawe! For ich do see the blakke sayles of the DREDE PYRATE ROBERTSON his two shippes, the Caritas and the Cupiditas. And the Drede Pyrate Robertson never leveth captives!”

Up wente the trompe, and wyth grysely soun out wente the grete gonnes, and heterly ower shippes dide hurtelene al togedir at oones. In goth the grapplinge-hooke, and the pyrates dide crye “arrrgh!” and shake ther pegge-legges at us, and dide swash ther buckles ovir and cutte our rigginge. And ich was dazed and fel doun.

Whanne ich woke, ich sawe IV faces peeringe a-doun at me, and yet they hadde but IV eyen betwene hem, for thei were pyrates alle. In sum wise, my feres and my Lord Sir Berkeley had scapede, and yet ich hadde ben ytaken by the pyratez for ransoum and putte on to ther shippe.

“Arrrgh,” seyde a pyrate, “Wel mayst thou feere for thy lyf, for the Drede Pyrate Robertson cometh to thee, and he shal take thy kernele from thy huske.”

"Aye matey," seyde an othir pyrate, "Thou spekest troth. Robertsones exegesis shal leve thee yn pieces!"

And ther he came, terrible for to looke vpon, wyth a parrot on his shouldre and a wide hatte wyth a skulle and bones y-crossede and a pegge leg and a copye of the De Doctrina Christiana by Seynt Augustine.

“Plese sire, plese spare my lyf!” ich dide crye.

“Yt beth nat yn my power to maken excepciouns," the Drede Pyrate dide shrugge hys brode sholdres and the parrot dide moue accordinglie, "Oones worde doth leke out that a pyrate hath goon softe, peple beginne to disobeye. And then it beth no thinge but werke, werke, werke, al the tyme.”

“Plese sir, plese, ich nede to lyve!”

“For what reson?”

“For ich haue begun to wryte sum Tales of Canterburye, and thei are but barelye bigonne. My name ys Chaucer, Geoffrey Chaucer, and Kyng Richard shal paye a pretti bountee for my hede, for whanne ich was yonge ich was y-ransoumed for XVI pounde, and now ich am at leeste thries as hevy a manne as ich was in thos dayes of yore whanne ich dide serue as valet!”

He dide pause yn thoghte, and also dide consulte hys boke of Christian Allegorie, “Al righte, Geoffreye. Ich haue neuer hadde a valet. Thou kanst trye yt for tonighte. Yt most likely shal happe that yn the morninge ich shal slaye thee.”

For manye dayes he dide saye the same ech night, “Good nighte, Geoffrey. Thou hast done wel. Maye slepe be swete to thee. Yt most likely shal happe that yn the morninge ich shal slaye thee.”

The pyrates dide take me as oon of ther companie, and dide yive me ear-ringes (ouche!) and a parrot the whiche was a hand-me-downe from an oothir pyrate who hadde acquirede a moore colourful and impressive birde.

Ich dide lerne of the arte of spekynge lyk a pyrate, and dide swabbe the deckes wyth grete relishe. For ich was so gladde of my lyf and my breeth that ich wolde probablie haue enjoyede watchinge Ishtar yf thei hadde made me do so.

And thus al was wel, until we dide redie to ouertake a Frensshe vessel. Thanne my legges dide aquaken and shiveren lyk two trees yn a storme. Ich felle ydoun and blakeness coverede myn eyen. And aftir, the pyrates hadde muche disdayne and scorne of me, and the Drede Pyrate Robertson dide threten that ich wolde walke the planke if ich dide nat pulle my weighte.

But what coud ich do? Ich am nat a manne of fightinge – manye longe yeeres haue ypassid syn ich dide handle a weapne.

“Ich kan nat fighte, nor take plunder and bootie. I nam a man of werre, ich am a manne of ale and poetrie.”

“Ywis, Mayster Chaucer, why shaltow nat walke of the planke? Shaltow ete of ower foode and drinke of ower rum and do nat a thynge for vs? Yf thou kanst nat fighte, what kanst thou do?” And the pyrates all rounde me rattlede ther saberes.

“Ich kan...” and thanne my minde did seise vpon it, “Ich kan kepe accountez, and enrolle custoumes.”

Yt took a litel convincinge, but ich dide do muche for the crewes of the Drede Pyrate Robertson. Bifor my cominge, thei hadde knowne no thynge of kepinge of recordes and accounting, and thus muche had been poorlye spente and ther was muche waste and corrupcioun. But with my litel quille and my accounte boke (and my litel woolen hatte, the whiche doth helpe me to thinke), ich did sette the shippes straighte.

Ich dide divide accountez in to plunder (commoditees ytaken from holdes of shippes, viz. wyn or wexe), bootie (goodes ytaken from passengers, viz. jewelerie, bokes, and incidentale items) and ransoum (self-explanatorie) and kepte thre columnes. Ech takere of income wolde bringe me a slippe detailynge yt, and ich wolde yive a recepite and kepe the accountes. Ich dide employe II clerkes, Barnacle Bille and Edward the Blakke-Sworde, who dide produce recordes and sende memoranda to Captayne Robertson. We dide balaunce the in-take of bootie/plundere/ransoum wyth the outlaye of wenchinge, parrote-keepinge, and replacemente of bodye partes.

Ich was full proude of my systeme! In no tyme, ich was doynge complicated pyrate calculaciouns:

Exempli gratia

II de Juillet – ytaken, the frennshe shipe ‘Zidane,’ XX lbs golde (plunder) + II locketes wyth jeweles (bootie) = L eye patches + VII cutlasses + III hookes for handes.

IV de Juillet – ytaken, the flandrishe shipe ‘Hennepin,’ XVI lbs woole (plundere) + xx lbs emeraldes (bootie) + IV yonge fleminges (ransoum) = iv parrotes, iii legges of woode, xii nights of ale and fayre wenches

And thus the dayes were fulle of accountes and the nightes were fulle of songe and rum, and ich was, in my weye, verye happye. Yt was, ich trowe, the beste vacacioun ich haue ever taken.

And yet as Boethius doth knowe, all goode thinges must come to an ende. Oon foule daye, we sawe the shippes of the FEEREDE BUCCANEER DONALDSON, who dide seise ower shippes and capture the Drede Pyrate Robertson and dide putte me ashore som where near Dover. And thus, wyth my parrot and my eye patch and my ear-ringes, stinkinge of rum and of see watir, ich did come home. And thogh in sum regard ich wolde fayne be on the fayre shippe Cupiditas on the rollinge see, yt ys still a thinge of muche sweteness to haue children to talke to, and a wyf to painfullye remoue ear-ringes from my ears, and a blogge to write vpon. So welcome me home, ye land lubberz. And thre cheeres for my fayre and noble suster-in-lawe who did mynde my blogge the while ich was offe havynge aventurez. And nowe, to bedde and to dreme of the see.

vendredi, juillet 07, 2006

Henri le Potier

On thyse day, as I coked sop for Joane to eten (she groweth teth, so I maye nat haven hir be nursed muchel mower) I was thinkynge of my poetrye and historie of Vin Diesel, and at ones I was striken by a newe idee, formed in ful within myn heed:

Ther shal be a child, cleped Henri le Potier. He is the child of wicches, who aren deed, and he hath home wyth his yvele oncle and aunte. He then recyves worde forto scoleye so he maye lernen the wayes of wicches. The maistre of the studie is clepen Bourdon Dorre-bee, and there be a man who techeth, loothed by al heighted Snappe; There be two childeren, Hermesie who hath muchel wit, so myche that she is to be taughten with the menn, and a melancholic felawe named Rinaldo delle Donole. Henri le Potier cwelleth hem al for being wicches, and then atte fin he becometh a prest.

Hit shal be a serien, in VIII parties, and hit shal be named -- The Babesittres Club.


A MATTIR NEWE: Gode Kinge Richard hath asked I name the charactour Richard le Potier, so hit thus shal be. I shal clepe the erste partie "The Babesittres Clube: Richard and Alkemical Thynges."

mercredi, juillet 05, 2006

Chaus; ower, Shoon

Yeestre day, (ower was hit night?) I notede on myn own journelle that I lyk to buyen chaus. Wel, sin I gan to thinken on the mattir, I concluded that I neded an other peyr of blakke chaus. So I boughte some belle botes aft I had ygoon unto the bathes. Haveth thyse chaus reversen claspes and al! (Wel yow witten, ful mo chaus be nat reversen. Moost chaus, swych as thyse woren by my brether-in-lewe, be the same on boothen sydes.)
Hmm... that image of Geffrey be faire bad. Loketh he lyk a deede bodie, and lyk a fate oone at that. Geffrey, whan thou mighte rede thyse poost -- doe nat padde thy pect yf thou meneth nat to weren a ceincture. Hit maketh a mann loke glotounouse and big. The whool resoun forto padden thy pect, is to maken thy waast loke mower smal. That maketh no werke yf thou goost aboute in grete houppelandes with no ceincture. Don a cotehardie atte lest, yf thou wilt nat no ceincture. I wote Philippe hath toolden thee mo times.

Anywey: chaus. I lyke chaus.


mardi, juillet 04, 2006

My Poetrye

Sin hit be too hoote to goon from the castelle, I have been makynge ordre of my papires and thynges. I founde therein myn poure eldehistorie of Vin Disel that I have yet to fin. Hit hadde therein my moost clever poem, whych Vin Disel singeth to me therein.

Mon chien as pulces, est en mourant de la peste,
For on hys flessh ymaken hem swych feste.
Et si, je suis en mourant, de mon amour de vous –
And in lakkyng yower love, I am anguissous.
Je crie comme mon chien, en la douleurs de mort,
Yet I, myn hound unlike, may be broghtten confort.
O, babie, babie, mighten yow a nighte wyth me enjoy?
A, poupee, poupee, voulez vous coucher avec moy?

Si soit que vous egratigniez ce gale de me,
I shale from that momente yowers everemo be.
Combien que mon chien est mourir, me sauvase;
For hit ben yow that my grevaunces cause,
Et ainsi ce vous estes que guerissent cet.
O! Liste I that yow shoulde maken me bet!
O, babie, babie, mighten yow a nighte wyth me enjoy?
A, poupee, poupee, voulez vous coucher avec moy?

I have been caughtten in plot troubles, so I have nat fined the tale. The eventes therein all be shapen, though. I juste nede to
expresse forwhy Vin Disel hath an Yvel Castelle, and forwhy he chaungeth to a dragon nere the ende.

Je hai l'Este

A, Sommer. Although hit be ful fair, with al the herbes and tres, and the briddes-song and grene, one may ete naught but chikkones sin al else should rotten in the sonne er hit may be fin, and one nede chaungen her cloth ful VI times eche day, so wett and foul with swete hem groweth.
Whan in my chaumbre, I may goon about with myn wimple off, my sleves un-bouttoned, my skrits pullen up with my ceincturette and my hosen casten wey, and then hit be nat so badde, but whan I nede appere for othres, unlees hit be my Johne, hit is dredful and I growe reed and drenched, and stynke lyk a stable. My Johne hath sayd he lyketh the mannir in whych I stinke; he is so swoote! But ne myn own selfe lyketh how I stinke, so goon I shale to the bathes thyse weke.

I maye nere nat weyte for Saint Grimbaldes Dey! There shal be a feste for that, and then there shal be mete that is nat chikkon.

dimanche, juillet 02, 2006

Les Lutins a Les Fraises!

It is oonly now that I mighte deign to speke of thyse, so dredful hit was.

Went we, my childeren and Ich, to goon and gathere strewen-berries atte feldes nere Southwark. As ye wote, strewen-berries be so strewen aboute by elves who shal catche an ire yf thou takest alle the fruites any oone herb haveth.
We are wendynge the feldes, and we are pikeynge the fruites, and we are dropeyng hem in ower buquets, whan I see – horrures! – estupide Henry hath pullen alle the fruites fro an herb!
“Henry, what hastow doon!?” I cryed. And he saw I was aguisshed, so he sterted to creyen, and so I sterted to creyen, then al gan to creyen and I sayd “Now we may alle deye and be mordred by elves!”


I speke verrily, with ne ne oon falsitye ne. ELVES LOKEN JUST LYKE CATTES! I mighte nat have shryked: Ful my vois was stopped. Then, the elf lett forth hites demone-crey and I toke lite Johnes arm and Thomases arm eke and put Joane neath myn arm let Henry runne hymself sin thyse was al hys fault anywey, and we flowen schremefuly fro the elf!

Swych confort got we as we founde the bloody heedes of felones! A, ne were I nevere so gladd forto seen the chopped-off heedes on London Brygge! Yet – had the elf us followed! Hit was there ayein! And now hit gurgled forth an yvel sound, lyk an hundred tabours in hits bely, and gan to wipen hits demon-elf-flesshe on Henryes leg, sikerly for that he hath bidden hit forth, but I thoughte: “Though hit be Henry who shal cwell us al, I shal nat lette him to deye!” And wyth al my corage and strengthe, I cized the elf and threwe hit a the riveer! Deye, elfe, deye!

And thilke, I feynted, and I droped Joane on hir heede, but lite Johne had saven the strewen-berries, so hit was alle “Oll Korrekt,” whych methinketh be a doublyng of wordes unnecesste. Whan her atte Savoye ayein, I maked strewen-berry cakke, and for hys gode werkes I gave Johne the broodest pece; and though he would have mordered us al, I gave some to Henry eek.

Whan Constaunze came yby my chaumbres, though, I toold hir we hadde eten hit al, though there was an whool cakke that remaineth yet. The bytch shal nat deliten of my cakke!


samedi, juillet 01, 2006

Affayres Presente

Geffrey hath sayd I ought to speke of affayres presente and of courtlie gossip. Here is some gossip for yow: Constanze de Castelle is a bytch and I hate hir.
As for affayres presente, let us seen what the town cryer hath sayd:


Atte premir of the werkes of Hugh of Eglington, who be clepen “Huchoun” for causes nat beknowen*, in a manifeste of manye of hys meynee, dede rampeth on the platteform whilst he sange The Aventures of Arthure, ful ycwellynge thre menn in swych deede. Huchoun pleynte and tolde the thringe to moven ybak, but ne dede he nat don awey the avauncynge folke, who creyed “Swoote Susanne, Swoote Susanne!” whych be hys moost wel belovede poem.
“Divers menn weren crosshed to deeth ower stempen,” sayd William Walworth inne declaracioun. The persounes deede ne were wooten nat atte tyme thyse informacioun was gathered. In alle, thre deyed in the desastre.

*Ywit he be so cleped because of hys devocioun to estupide “anime” shewes from the oryent.

I shoulde nat lesse my childeren to seen thyse anime shewes. I have seen what hit doth – hit maketh menne wisshe to seen nat no thynge but anime, and neightest thou knowest, thy childeren are donnynge animal clothyng and “yiffyng” eche othere.

A, my childeren. Sin hit be sommer, they goon oute forto pley a gretely deel. But to morrowe we shal goon out togetheres, forto gathere strewen-berries. From hem I shal make a gode breede ower cake, mo bet than thatte yvel breede I assayed to maken afore.


Teest teest teestynge

Sin neither dere Geffrey ne me can no thynge about computerie there hath been doubte as to howe wele he hath setten up thyse "geste-blogger" acounte. Here endeth my teeste poste.