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January 30th, 2005, 12:42 PM
I wrote the following poem as an accompaniment to a Dungeons and Dragons Game that was being played by mail among a group of penpals, about 1993. Deedra Merope was a pseudonym that I'd taken for my Internet presence, mostly on AOL and MSN. The poem first appeared in an MSN poetry forum under that name.

Permission is granted to repost this poem in its entirety, provided that no changes are made and that credit is given either to "Deedra Merope" or to "Jerry Abbott writing as Deedra Merope."

Permission is granted for using this poem as a starting point for a story written by someone else, and in that case an acknowledgement would be nice, but not required, and no other obligation will be due me.


Concerning the Cow of Glaspenscow
by Deedra Merope (a.k.a. Jerry Abbott)

About a battle, I will sing
As arrows fly and shields still ring
And spells of magic work their might
Upon the foes, whom we shall smite

It began today; our company heard
That dirty orcs would try to curd
The milk that flows from a sacred cow
Belonging to folk in Glaspenscow

The residents are vegetarian
Their industry is all agrarian
But anyhow, they do drink milk
And fear spoilage by monster ilk

We were in town and heard the need
And named ourselves to do the deed
Of slaying the orcs and whatever kin
That they may call to save their skin

Anon, at once, we borrowed horses
And left the town by river courses
We came upon some smelly camps
And, nearing them, we doused our lamps

For long past noon we'd been unaware
Of chance to do what we would dare
So when their fires first met our sight
The sun had set, and it was night

Our caution spoke; we sent our scout
To assess the foe and scope them out
For it would not do to engage and rumble
A thousand orcs in rough and tumble

Dreg Corban dismounted and sallied forth
The camps were east, but he went north
Then circled 'round to count the foe
'Cause things like that are good to know

When he returned, we thought it best
To slay the orcs who chased him west
For while our scout was busy sneaking
Three enemies had caught him peeking

The three who chased had guessed him sport
A passer-by of the human sort
A casual lone and local smarty
And not vanguard of a larger party

As Dreg climbed back upon his horse
Thane Boulder expressed profound remorse
That the orcs had carried so little gold
And that their pockets were lined with mold

When Thane jumped on his mighty beast
We armed ourselves and headed east
While Laundra Loren chanted spells
Like "Mystic Shield" and "Jingle Bells"

Our bard played tempo for the druid
They sang with voices soft and fluid
A rondelay that all should know:
The Lay of Feather Valli Lowe

That's my name, a dwarf whose ear
Was maimed by orcs in yesteryear
And in a year my reputation
For killing orcs surprised the nation

Just then we spied him, a dirty orc
Near a cook-fire eating pork
Laundra Loren, with her bow,
Shot at him and laid him low

His dying scream awoke the dozens
Of hairy, dark, and heinous cousins
Who poured, antlike, out of tents
And dared to give us more offense

"Because you killed our brother Clops,
We'll turn you into steaks and chops,"
One said, and therewith drew his axe
And then they charged us with attacks!

At first my friends were sore beset
As we the orcs in battle met
A blow caught Dreg in armor joints
And took from him five damage points

We fought back with our flashing swords
And songs of awful magic chords
Yea, as I sing we're fighting now
For the safety of a milking cow

A huge orc swings his blade at me
I drop and roll to save H.P.
My hatchet cleaves him in the head
And down he goes, so quickly dead

By diligence, we turned the tide
Far more of them than us has died
The last two orcs had tried to run
Dreg knocked one down with a blowgun

The other hid inside a bush
But was betrayed by his own tush
While searching 'round, Dreg heard him fart
And clobbered him, too, with a dart

We won the battle; we danced and sang
Our arrows flew; our shields had rang
We merrily sing and chant and revel
'Cause each of us will rise a level

On our return to Glaspenscow
We found the town without a cow
The folk were lunching near a lake
All carving ribs and eating steak!

They'd had no faith in our prowess
And ate their cow to have one less
Mouth to feed on the golden wheat--
Besides, everyone has a taste for meat