filk_of_belac (filk_of_belac) wrote,

The Sinful Scholar of Antioch

Title: The Sinful Scholar of Antioch
Mythos: History
May be sung to the tune of: The Errant Apprentice
Owner of the original: Words by Bill Watkins, tune by Andy Stewart
Written on: Fall 2006
Background: This is basically a recasting of the original, set in the Crusades, with the cowardly apprentice of the original replaced by an equally timorous Arab scholar.

When I was young and merry, not yet old and shrewd and wary
By the Caliph’s secretary my advancement it was blocked
I was learn-ed in Adab, but Baghdad I found drab
so I took what I could grab and thus came to Antioch
there to sin I was enticed, my conduct slipped to vice
for a houri out of Paradise was Maryam bint Hamid
in her all loveliness was gathered, oh, I was sorely bothered
And according to her father she was pure in word and deed

All the turtle doves were cooing as I took to my wooing
Her loveliness pursuing in the springtime of that year
But she told me to be busy, not to study and be lazy
In the armor of a ghazi, oh 'tis then she'd hold me dear
With ardor bold and keen, I joined Salah ad-Din
‘neath the banner of the green to go fighting ‘gainst the Franks
To the wind I threw all caution, I'll return with fame and fortune
Maryam would be my portion when I'd risen through the ranks

On the gravestone of her mother, she swore she loved no other
But I did soon discover that on me she’d played a prank
The news, oh it was bad, for as the story had,
Whilst I’d been on jihad that she had married to a Frank
Well me, I then deserted for to find the girl who’d flirted
Back to Antioch reverted for my jealousy was picqued
in a tavern there I found her, the Frank’s fat arms around her
as together they did flounder in a drunken stupor deep

So I took my time and waited until their thirst was sated
And home they navigated through the streets of Antioch
At Hamid’s he stood a’knocking and whilst they were unlocking
I put a stone into a stocking and full smote him with the rock
'Twas then the night's serenity was rent with loud obscenity
And vile Frank profanity I couldn't understand
Loudly cursing he essayed me, with full intent to slay me
But as he tried to fillet me, I was screaming up the strand

Like an army on parade he chased me with his great blade
Like it was the first Crusade he pursued me in his pride
Through the waterside he chased me, up Mons Silpius he raced me
At the Orontes Bridge he faced me, so I jumped into the tide
Sure, bravery's no virtue when some Frank is trying to hurt you
And all noble thoughts desert you when you see his bloody sword
For there's many things worth trying for and occasionally worth lying for
But laisa shay’ worth dying for, so such conflict I’ll abhor.
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