The Song of the Seven Candles

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The Song of the Seven Candles

by: Ernest Rhys (Author)

I
Seven Candles round my bed,
    (To the damsels, to the damsels)
Bring the salt and bring the bread!
     (To her damsels, said the Queen.)

II
Then the curtains close (she said
    To the damsels, to the damsels
)
Tell him Queen Gwenhwyfar's dead;
     (To her damsels, said the Queen.)

III
Tell cruel Kai, Gwenhwyfar's pride
     (To the damsels, to the damsels)
Like a Queen's waxed as she died:
     (To her damsels, said the Queen.)

IV
Yet sadly, too, her fates led on
     (To the damsels, to the damsels)
To the fair coasts of Avalon:
     (To her damsels, said the Queen.)

V
Tell cruel Kai, with small content,
    (To the damsels, to the damsels)
She left the beechen leaves of Gwent;
    (To her damsels, said the Queen.)

VI
Yet making haste for pride(she said
    To the damsels, to the damsels
)
Gwenhwyfar died ere she was dead:
    (To her damsels, said the Queen.)

VII
Now from her wake let Kai begone
    (To the damsels, to the damsels)
To the Haut King in Caledon:
    (To her damsels, said the Queen.)

VIII
But first, before he leave, ( she said
    To the damsels, to the damsels
)
Offer him the salt and bread:
    (To her damsels, said the Queen.)

IX
If he will eat my sins for me
    (To the damsels, to the damsels)
Kai's soul is lost and mine goes free:
     (To her damsels, said the Queen.)

X
My soul is mine in Avalon,
     (To the damsels, to the damsels)
But Kai's must war in Caledon:
    (To her damsels, said the Queen.)

XI
Seven passions, seven wars,
    (To the damsels, to the damsels)
Seven candles, seven stars,
    (To her damsels, said the Queen.)

XII
Seven candles round the bed
    (To the damsels, to the damsels)
Bring the salt and bring the bread!
    (To her damsels, said Gwenhwyfar,
Laughed and wept and cried the Queen.
)