Honor and Joy

Good people, come from far and wide,
To hear the tale we love to tell.
We sing of a Shire, with rightful pride,
Of Falcon's Keep we love so well.

Honor and joy were ne'er so deep
As in the Shire of Falcon's Keep.

The flash of a helm, the ring of mail,
The fighters all of noble heart,
The chivalrous soul that will not fail,
In Falcon's Keep they play a part.


At music and dance, at pen and sword,
At garb and brew do we excel.
For laziness is here abhorred,
In Falcon's Keep, 'tis true to tell.


The ladies so fair, the men so strong,
The children who our futures be,
The gentles whose dream has lasted long,
In Falcon's Keep proud folk are we.


Other verses for particular situations:

(To honor royalty)
Honor and joy to King and Queen,
To Prince and Princess ever be!
Loyal in times both fat and lean
Your subjects are in Falcon's Keep.

(At an 'away' event)
We bow to you all, the gracious host,
Thanks for your hospitality.
May peace be yours, both all and most,
This wish for you, from Falcon's Keep.

(At a local event)
We bow to you all, our honored guests,
With all our hospitality.
Come give your weary feet a rest,
And welcome be to Falcon's Keep!

(Finish with chorus, sung twice.)

Written for my home Shire of Falcon's Keep, located in eastern Northshield, in the Midrealm. Copyright 1998, J. Friedman.

This is one of those songs that will never make it to an A & S Tournament. How would I document it? It came to me in the shower, not once but many times over the course of three or four months (I take a lot of showers), and no matter how many times I told it no, it wasn't time, I can't actually sing anything yet, it kept pestering me to be sung.

In desperation I finally sang it for the Shire, pale and trembling, at a wintertime moot in early 1999, accompanied by my good friend Lady Kontzel Haberlein on recorder. They greeted it with warmth. I wiped my brow and thought, "Good, that's out, now maybe I won't have to do this again anytime soon."

I did the song at a few other local events, to a decreasing amount of success. I started to think I was embarrassing myself, that writing it had been a mistake and I should just be quiet. Then I met Mistress Wyndreth, an incredible local bard whose enthusiasm for all music is inspiring to me (not to mention her canon of extremely singable songs), at a small event. We sat around with some other people and noodled and hummed and did vaguely musical things. I told her I had written this one song, and she wanted to hear it. So I sang it, and she told me I was a bard. Poof. That was it. That was how I became a bard.

This particular song has never won huge acclaim. For one thing, it's in praise of one very specific place (and I'm one of maybe two singers in that place) and so doesn't appeal as a general rousing-type song. For another, the lyrics frankly aren't very interesting, being of the general praise-song wow-it's-cool variety. Also I bring it out when I don't know what else to sing, which is probably a mistake. But personally, it's my favorite of my pieces to date. It's simple, it's stirring, it doesn't stretch my range, it sounds good with even the least sophisticated of drum accompaniments, and I can usually remember the words these days...!

Back to Jennifer's Page

Back to Eliane's Bardic Book

Last modified: 03/14/00