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Tag Archives Richard II; Henry Bolingbroke; Henry IV; Ireland; Flint; London; Chester; Parliament; epicure; cloth of gold; serfs; King; Usurper.


On liberty’s last morning, he said mass

in the Great Tower – the chapel was cold

as winter. August’s sun warmed the rebels

riding along the estuary shore,

their drums silent. He watched from the walls.

At his back, the seas breaking on Ireland. King

and Usurper, first cousins, exchanged

purple words in the base court, a surfeit of

epithets: bombast, self-pity. Serfs

were indifferent but Richard’s dog fawned

on new majesty. The epicure

who bespoke a coat of cloth of gold

rode captive from Fflint to London in the same

suit of clothes.