The Kind and the Rotten

This is something different from what I usually write. I'm definitely an amateur when it comes to poetry. I can never quite get the rhythm right, but when I create something, I have to give it some sort of life outside of my own mind. The imperfect poem that I post is better than the perfect poem that never gets written.

I started out writing this as a children's story about consent. Of course, the subject matter is more appropriate for older kids, but the setting is geared towards younger kids. So this is really not suitable for any audience.


In a faraway place,
In a time long forgotten,
A kingdom was home to the kind and the rotten.

In the middle of the land,
Sat a castle quite grand,
Where a royal family ruled.
There were knights and steads,
Servants to meet every need,
And a young lord who had everyone fooled.

Lord Sterling was his name,
He had wealth, power, and fame,
Winning the affection of every damsel.
But the woman he most sought,
Returned his affections naught,
She was the beautiful Princess Janelle.

Indeed, her beauty far surpassed,
Even the princesses of times past,
She had a glow all her own.
More beautiful still,
Was her pure heart and will,
Desiring she not be loved for beauty alone.

Over Sterling, the kingdom fawned,
They were smitten and charmed,
By the lord's humor and wit.
Yet, there was one knight who knew better,
For he was even more clever
And hoped he could one day prove it.

That day came,
When a stubborn Sterling remained,
Despite the princess' orders.
"Please leave me be!" she said,
"I love you no more than as a friend."
But the lord followed into her quarters.

As the knight walked the castle halls,
He heard a sound through the walls,
That gave him great pause.
"Give me a kiss!" the lord yelled out,
But Janelle resisted and began to shout,
"Let me go scoundrel! Fraud!"

The determined lord persisted,
Janelle's wrists he nearly twisted,
Forgetting his charisma and charm.
Janelle grew fearful,
Her face turned tearful,
As a combative Sterling gripped her arms.

Just then,
The brave knight burst in.
Shouting "Unhand her, you haughty fool!"
Sterling said, unbothered by his ruse,
"We can fight, but you'll lose,"
As he prepared to duel.

Alas the poor knight would have to choose.
"To fight is to lose,"
He said hurling his sword to the ground.
"Then what will you do?" the lord asked.
The knight took him to task,
"Expose what I have found."

"You are not who you appear to be,
And soon the kingdom will see,"
The knight declared.
"For there are two ways to harm,
I stand before you unarmed,
But you will run scared."

The knight lowered himself to one knee,
"My lord, what will it be?"
He said staring up, a bold look in his eye.
Lord Sterling looked dumbfounded,
He dropped his sword and his blood pounded,
Dashing out the door, without a reply.

Out of the kingdom Lord Sterling had fled,
Without a home to rest his head,
Regretting all he had done.
He knew there was nothing left for him,
But to be thrown away into prison,
Despite everyone's favor he had won.

In the castle, the princess was surprised,
Then gestured for the knight to rise,
Without a loss to her tenderness and grace.
"What is your name?" she asked the brave knight.
"I am Sir John. I serve as your father's acolyte,"
He said, longing for her embrace.

It is true he longed for the princess,
As most men had similar wishes,
But it was not for his own sake.
He desperately wanted to defend her goodness,
To reprove all lewdness,
And not a broken woman make.

"You are a knight,
Yet you refused to fight?"
Janelle pondered, though a reply she did not demand.
"Never before have I seen such courage,
Than a man who would not be discouraged,
When facing an opponent absent a weapon in his hand."

Janelle gazed at Sir John,
And he in return stared on.
A fire had sparked inside them.
She was gentle and kind,
A woman of mystery and strong mind,
From which her goodness stemmed.

Sir John was a noble man,
Whose adventure in life had now began.
He was the one Janelle had been hoping for.
He did not care for honor or praise,
Though he was honorable in his own way,
His only care was to save her.

Sometime after they had met,
The two decided to wed,
For they had a love like no other.
There was joy throughout the land,
As they stood hand in hand,
Taking vows to love and care for each other.

To this day, they are in love all the same,
Free from suspicion and shame,
Living in the castle's tower.
The kingdom is now the home
To the kind, and the kind alone,
While outside its walls, the rotten still cower.


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