The Princess and the Pea

In kingdoms rife with royalty
Through mountains far and near
The prince, upon his mighty steed
Searched out a princess dear

The young disheartened lad returned,
Informed the king and queen:
“The four corners and seven seas
Hold not my bride-to-be!”

One eve’ening the skies turned grey;
Lightning, thunder, then rain
The king was smoking in his room
A knock came at the gate

A beggar stood amongst the guards
Before great golden stairs
Small raindrops glistened on her nose,
Blue diamonds in her hair

The king did answer graciously
(He was a noble host)
The queen followed suspiciously
With slightly upturned nose

“My lord, my king, your majesty
I beg of you an ear
Although you may not be convinced
I’ll tell you why I’m here.”

The girl removed her tattered cloak,
Let down her golden hair
“Your son is looking for his mate,
I am that maiden fair.”

“Oh, very well,” the king replied
“It’s devilishly late
Please come inside and stay the night,
Tomorrow sees your fate.”

That wint’ry night the princess slept
On twenty mattresses
She tossed and turned from restlessness
And from an aching head

Next morning’s sunrise graced with light
The quiet countryside
A solitary traveler
Prayed a prayer unheard

“How was your rest, my honoured guest?”
(Again, this king had class!)
Trailing his royal highness was
The prince, his queen in last

“I cannot lie, and so confess
Your hospitality
Is not quite fit for princesses
Especi’lly not for me!”

“Your mattresses are cactuses,
Feathers like razor blades
Fill iron sheets of chainèd mail
In rocky crevices."

This poetry spoke fluidly
From her red moistened lips
The king, the queen, foremost the prince
Have loved her ever since

That’s it, my friends, we’ve reached the end
And one most happy be!
A true love story of true love;
“The Princess and the Pea”

-Zac Herman

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