IOI (7/4/1934 / Hebburn.Co Durham U.K)

The Minarets Of Trebizond

I can still see though distantly
the soaring spires of Trebizond
I take my leave reluctantly
upon a quest which goes beyond.

The confines of my city state
where every street’s familiar
I am condemned by cruel fate
who chose me in particular

To cement alliances made
so long ago they need renewed
and so I lead a cavalcade
of fighting men. My attitude

at once humble and dignified.
Befitting an ambassador
who has the power to decide
Shall we make peace, prepare for war..

Why was I chosen for this task?
A question which I do not voice
I do not know who I should ask.
I only know I have no choice.

The powers that be selected me
for reasons I don’t understand
To be their sole emissary.
I am their servant to command.

If I succeed I will return
to adulation from the crowds
An honour I will have to earn
If fate decrees I am allowed.

But if I fail I shall not see
the spires of Trebizond again
I’ll be exiled permanently
such is the fate of broken men.

I’ll do my best I can but try.
Conduct my quest with courtesy
Renegotiate each treaty
in friendship not hostility.

My journey took me several years
Forgotten by the powers that be.
But I return to hearty cheers.
The people still had faith in me.

Oppressed by the dishonest men
who had seized power in my absence.
They looked to me to take again
the reins of power and commence.

the cleansing of our city state
So I took power reluctantly.
It seemed to be the will of fate
That I should rule with honesty.

And who am I to disagree.
What fate decides that she will do.
I will submit to her decree
I will the rule of law renew.

In my beloved Trebizond.
So that her fame will spread afar
beyond her borders far beyond.
She will become the guiding star.

For city states both far and near
They can observe and emulate
the simple laws are few and clear
in this successful city state.

Which fate has called on me to rule
against my wishes I confess.
I am aware I’m just a tool
a simple tool no more no less.

That fate can use for her purpose.
She knows I hate dishonesty,
that’s why she chose me I suppose.
To take responsibility

for Trebizond this fair city.
Which had been subject to misrule.
by men who lacked all honesty.
She chose a fool to be her tool

I am content it should be so
For Trebizond I gladly serve
until it is my time to go.
Then I will reap what I deserve.

But Trebizond continues on
if only in men’s memories.
A dream to pin your hopes upon
and visit in your fantasies.

poetic piers

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Comments (1)

A fascinating epic poem Ivor, written with great style - befitting the sweep and majesty of the subject: the efforts to maintain that relic state that lasted for 200 years or so. I don't know the details, but I'm assuming this refers to the early period when there was still some prospect of survival, at or after the reign of the brothers Alexios and David. It all got rather messy by about 1350AD if memory serves me correctly. Superb read, and superbly written. Great rhythm and rhyme. Real poetry my friend. Best to you, jim