Elizabeth Horrocks

The Last Companion

You cannot imagine how lonely it was.
So many were dead, or were lost to my sight:
with Lancelot a hermit, our good Queen a nun,
young Galahad finding the mystical Grail,
and Gawain long gone, and great Merlin entrapped…
Those not lying cold on the last battlefield
are sleeping with Arthur deep under a hill –
as good as dead, now, to my sore, empty heart –
the edge of a hill, though I dare not say where
for fear of the foolish who’d go to disturb…
and I, who have witnessed so many great things,
(weak Bedevere, last of our close Company),
am keeping the faith, and ride, spreading the word,
to old, broken villas, and smoky dark halls:
instructing the bards to remember the King:
our High King, our Arthur, commander and friend:
his splendour a light to quench cruel Saxon dark,
till even the pagan will see his true worth.
My work – useful, vital – can fill the long days.
But you cannot imagine how lonely I am.

Elizabeth lives in Alderley Edge, Cheshire though she was born in Cardiff. She went to Bristol University, and taught English in a variety of settings, but now becoming more involved in the writing world, especially poetry. She was BBC Mastermind Champion in 1974, and have been on several “Specials” since then.