Arthur, King at God’s command,
mighty master in his own free land,
assembled his companion – knights
around the sacred table – oak
to reveal the message of the Lord ;
he sent out his valiant cavaliers
to search and find the Holy Truth,
sealed safely, as was told of yore,
in the vessel of the Sacred Grail,
guarded by a multitude of jealous Gods,
containing the Light of the Lord
to feed the Serpent Power of man.

And Lancelot,
more famous than them all,
did not fulfil his pledge,
but sought his passions’ end:
instead of paining on his quest,
he pondered to beguile his queen,
and Gwenhyvar, who was to be
her husband’s strongest stay,
was flattered by his youth
and the freshness of his limbs:
she gave him way to what for God
she promised to her betrayed King.

Keye, master of the sword,
married to his horse and spear,
rode out with clever skill.
He fought when fighting was required,
but mostly roved on hidden path
to find the sages of the woods
and many improper fact he found,
but none of them could satisfy
his thirst to know the real truth.
none could guide him to his goal.

Macheloas, noble Prince of Youth
and Sire of the Isle of Glass,
where eternal spring does reign,
drove out with pomp and splendour
and on his rambles in the woods
of wonder met with Blondamors,
to whom he used to bear great passion.
Struck by the beauty of her limbs,
they drank the wine of love
and ate the cake of idle prey,
but satiated by their futile pleasure,
they were grudging and grumbling
and digressed in the devious ways
of thought and inappropriate pride.

Erec, once a knight of great valour,
had become the slowest of them all.
lover of sumptuous banquets and wine.
He went straight to a witch in the woods
and urged her to reveal the secret
of the last and ultimate truth.
‘ Not yet,’ she said. ‘ Go to the big water
in the middle of the forest and fast
for seven days… then you will see
the first ray of truth coming to you
on the wings of the Mother of the Woods.’
But abstain from food he could not ;
so, with guilt in his mind
he returned to his world of illusion,
where he could satisfy his belly
but was not able to satisfy his heart.

Iwein,of very great descent,
courageous more than all,
strove to slay untruth
with battlesword in hand
and so give way to truth.
His quest was full of deeds,
the very last more brilliant
than the first,
but discover he did not.
With great contempt
he rode straight on,
removed the hurdles
one by one
and pushed his way
through the darkest of woods
into the land of sham
and shadow
where he lost his way
and was condemned
to err forever.

Menagormon, in his brilliant panoply,
very pleased with the unsought quest
– sure as he was to win the Holy Grail –
rode through the woods and drowsy villages
on his beautiful fiery black stallion
until he reached the higher lands,
where he crossed many a fairy vale
and suddenly saw himself blocked
before a deep enchanting crevice:
from far below came soft enticing voices
meandering up to where he stood.
A sweet breeze of fresh seducing air
tied him up and pulled him down
and the smell of a thousand promises
challenged his legendary wit.
Enthralled, he unchivalrously slipped
down a twisting mossy lane
and reached his passions’ paradise:
a river of golden sparkling wine
in which a bunch of swarming witches
tried to attract him by gorgeous feint
and as he tasted from this fare
forgot about his quest.

The only one to unravel the knot
was Perceval, the humble herald of God.
Because he was innocent, chaste and wise,
patient, humble and stable, he could rise
above all others and as a real knight
brought to his King and kin the light
of the Sacred Vessel, which he didn’t find
in the dales and mountains of the mind,
nor in the woods and villages of desire,
but in the gentle force of his own inner fire,
that crossed his Mediterranean and emerged
out of the verges of the past and so urged
the Serpent Power to climb to the height
of the heavens to loose itself in the Light
of the Lord.

The devlish forces of the right
could not bind him tight,
nor could the enchanting voices
of the left tempt him to choices
unsound to the goal of his quest.
His innocent wisdom won the test
and he so saved the honour of the rest
by adding the seed of Divine Zest.

Belgium 1999