From LANARK 1981

Poem: Alasdair Gray © 2005

2 – Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, translation of first verse in Chapter 43


Since the siege and assault was ceasèd at Troy,

The burgh broken and turned to brands and ashes

(The tyke that the trammels of treason there wrought

Was tried for his treachery, the truest on earth)

It was Aeneas the Able and his high kind

Who since depressed provinces and patrons became

Wellnigh of all the wealth in the West Isles;

For rich Romulus to Rome riches he swipes,

With great bobbaunce that burgh he builds upon first

And names with his own name as now it hath;

Ticius in Tuscany township founds,

Langbeard in Lombardy lifts up homes

And far over the French flood Felix Brutus,

On many banks full broad Britain he builds

                        with his winnings

            Where war and wreck and wonder

            By times have waxed therein,

            And off both bliss and blunder

            Have had their innings.