My family were refugees from the Battle of Hastings, so I visited Battle Abbey and the battlefield as a pilgrim of sorts. When I got home I wrote the following poem:
Refugees — A family History
Our Sire is dead with an eye full of Arrow
His body won’t rest in his royal barrow;
Pretenders have won and the family must flee:
Nine tenths of our army lie dead on the lea!
More blood of kings will be spilt on the ground;
Sons, daughters and cousins are dead if they’re found.
So women and children and good fighting men,
Take what you can quickly and ride for the Glen!
In Scotland is safety, exile not death;
and when we arrive, locals take heed:
with the sword and the spear,
we will take what we need!
England is ours, but for now it is lost.
One day we’ll return whatever the cost!
We’ll take a new Crest and swear a new creed:
“Vulnerati non Victi” for our children to read.
A Raven pecking at a helm;
We’re down but we’re not out.
Not defeat but just withdrawal,
Strategic, not a rout!
The time is not ripe to reclaim our nation,
Our crest will remind the next generation.
Haralds must remain believers;
or degenerate to Border Reivers!
Time goes by;
History is legend,
And Myths do not last!
By 1603 Haralds are Horrells,
Banished by King for cross-border quarrels:
Once were Kings by right of Heaven,
Now are displaced to Dundee and Devon!