She was the princess worshipped from afar,
the actual original. Her life
mostly all statecraft. An assassin’s knife
had killed her husband, so she went to war
as women could, with promises and smiles
that bought alliances. She died in bed
at fifty-something. We don’t know she read
One line of Rudel’s verse. A thousand miles
he travelled, dying, just to see her face
one time. Perhaps he did, maybe she wept.
It was expected of her, but she slept
soundly that night. And now there is no trace
of any line he wrote for her. The past
gives little hope that words of love will last.