Monday, June 21, 2010

" King Richard's Treasure At Beeston..."

In March ( see my post March 4th ) Kate Riddington ( Keeper of Natural History at the Grosvenor Museum) visited my writing class....along with her countless exhibits...AND afterwards, lots of folk produced prose/poetry for her exhibition. ( SEE POSTER ABOVE )

We went to its launch in May..and enjoyed seeing results of Kate's work, plus contributions from folk throughout the area....

And here's mine....based on the Legend of King Richard's treasure. This legend has it that in 1399, King Richard 2nd hid his treasure in passageways leading off the well at Beeston Castle. This castle, now in ruins, dates from 1220...and was set in the most splendid of sites...on a high and solitary hill....with vast vistas of the Cheshire Plain.... and well beyond it.

(AND not a trace of Richard's treasure has ever been found.......

"Treasure At Beeston" :

"On a day like this, we watched buzzards soar…and waver in circles above us. Years ago.
We heard echoing calls of ravens, deep croaking from the tallest of trees. And we climbed the red sandstone cliff to stare across the Cheshire Plain.
And our gaze was long and lavish, spreading wide over eight British counties.

And while you looked for Snowdon, I found Cathedrals in Liverpool. And when you watched pheasants swoop, I smelt the sea, heard church bells from Chester (St Mary’s Within Walls, St Mary’s Without)… as they pealed across fields, sounds of delight, music across a Plain.

We were so sure, weren’t we!
You swore that the flashing of sun…through birch and rowan, through bracken and oak…was the light on that sign at the Odeon…as it flickered its glamorous wares…. So I laughed and my laughter rivalled the cackling of crows.
And I laughed again…when you said that the breeze in the trees was the Liverpool crowd…men dressed in red (seething with pride) victorious lions at Anfield.

So we stopped and we listened. We stood on this hill by a castle. Farmers worked in fields and lovers lay in hedgerows and the ruins of the castle were smug with their private personal secrets.
And at dusk when woodpeckers called, we searched for King Richard’s Treasure.

Then over years, Two Towers fell. A Wall came down. An old dark man won freedom. A Princess died. A Queen survived. And our babies grew. And had lives of their own. And the world moved on.

But now we stand on this hill again, watch buzzard soar; hear croak of ravens by a castle still gloating with secrets.
And I smell sea again … and you hear those rippling crowds at Anfield.

So we laugh again.
And I say to you: “We’ve found King Richard’s Treasure….” "


Blogger jinksy said...

I quite agree - the best treasures are elusive creations of our minds, intangible but all the more precious for that.

1:01 pm  
Blogger Fennie said...

Lovely piece of writing. But am curiously disappointed that you didn't find something tangible after that build up. Thanks for visiting my blog.

5:46 pm  
Blogger Marianne said...

Good that you can recognise where the real treasure is to be found, and know how to value it. Lovely writing, Jan.

7:28 pm  
Blogger Anne S said...

Well Jan, you've certainly come back to the blogosphere with a bang!

Highly enjoyable take on King Richard's Treasure at Beeston.

11:12 am  
Blogger Suzanne Jones said...

Great post - and love that piece of writing.


9:12 pm  
Blogger Jan said...

Yes indeed! Thankyou.

Yes, a chunk of medieval silver would have gone down well both in my Bank Balance and Antiques Roadshow!

Hope I value it enoughh!

Thanks Anne. Hope all OK on t'other side of the planet.

Good to see you and glad you enjoyed it!

9:44 am  

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