What do you say about non-Jamie/Claire Outlander couples? A good amount, apparently! The winners are in for the 2021 poetry contest. While we didn’t have a huge volume of entries, we certainly had lots of great ones. The judges, myself and my radio show co-hosts Alyson Bailey and Samantha Kraupner, were completely split on who should take the honors, but we finally narrowed it down to two of our poets (and three poems).
I’m not going to award places to either of these entrants – both will get equal prizes. So to our winners – Marlene Willauer and Catherine Curtis – I say congratulations! And I repress the urge to do so in verse.
Catherine’s two poems didn’t explicitly identify the couples she was poeming about, but I think it’s pretty obvious.
Leap of Faith
Set sail on an angry sea with a one handed man
Who said he loved me. I was still a child
Yet I knew my rebel heart called to his.
Dark and foreign, he was all I craved
In my small world, now so much bigger:
Wild, turbulent, distant.
We abandoned our lesser selves
To become something brave and new.
And her second is untitled:
The heart wants what the heart wants.
Stuck in the friend zone.
Marlene’s poem was fun, but if you haven’t read past the season 5 book, The Fiery Cross, you may not catch the reference (and I’m not going to spoil!).
The lassie weeps
She cannae choose
Among the lads who woo her
There are the twins, the German boy
And Bobby who pursues her
But in her heart, she pines
For the one she first laid eyes on
The gawky lad from Lallybroch
Who with the Indians has gone
Ah weel, moss shall not grow beneath her feet
She will choose as best she can
If she cannae have the lad she wants
She’ll take the two-for-one deal
Of course, I want to share with you the rest of our entries! Nann Harwood celebrates a very special friendship.
A fierce determination drew them together
A culture that tried to prevent and prevent their progress and dreams
In an era where neither were allowed because of their
Differences from the norm
A woman of a different time and place, out of her own time
But clinging to the hope and love of the past
And a man, aiming for a promise given to him from seventy-five years before
Claire and Joe – striving, dreaming, climbing
Their faith in each headfast and strong as they forge
A new beginning for themselves
As they forge into a new world and a new identity
Joe – the confidant of Claire Elizabeth Beauchamp Randall Fraser
Keeper of her secrets and their true meaning
A friend for mo nighean donn in her truest time of need
Gifted surgeon and collaborator
Helping, encouraging Claire to achieve her dream of returning to Jamie
While leaving his fiery haired daughter behind
To be protected by Joe as if she was his own
Claire – longing for a time over two centuries ago where
She fought alongside her Red Jamie, Scottish warrior
Loving him out of space and time
Yet, Joe always listening, nurturing, guiding his friend
To be with her MacDubh, allowing her to live in happiness and abandon
Claire – never afraid to accept a new challenge as she
Constructs and creates her life in the world of men
Where she chances upon a similar soul —
Who is exploring his new identity in an era that neither
Accepts him or his new role, regardless of his appearance
As they never accepted Claire
Two individuals who happen by chance to meet in the
Field of medicine
And end up friends for life.
Jessica Reynante notes that she has been immersed in Robert Burns lately, and wanted to celebrate her favorite couple, Young Ian and Rachel Hunter. Show-only fans have not yet met Rachel, and have another season yet to go before she comes in, but book fans know that this couple is a wonderful addition to the love stories of Outlander.
There was a lad, and he was fair,
At towering mountains and glittering lochs waiting to be seen,
He sat idle awaiting his time,
For a deep in his heart uncovered a greater call,
One he could never have foreseen.
And aye he longed for adventure,
A place he truly belonged,
In this blessed land he felt incomplete,
Drifting amongst ancestors who pleaded for him to follow along.
But this lad did not blink an eye,
Told a tale of a world anew,
He bravely stepped forward,
To help flesh and blood pull through.
Young Ian was the brawest lad,
The strength and pride of the glen,
And he had the soul of a warrior,
Just waiting to outwit the smartest of men.
In the threshold of a new land,
He embraced his valiant worth,
And aye he felt the pain of transformation,
Telleth a man now exemplary of his birth.
There once was a lad who fought sadness and darkness,
Now a man who lives amidst the land,
In the rolling tide of selfless pride,
He found the lass with an iron hand.
A lass who found prospect in death,
A Quaker to the end,
With passions wild and strong,
She gave refuge for Ian to love again.
Where human weakness comes short,
Together they succeed,
Two souls touched by a power to great to behold,
A fate now soothed his tempest howls with great steed.
All frailty stepped aside,
A love now strong and wild,
Listens to the elder voice,
Delighteth to see them smile,
At a union that does not let darkness hide,
But lets them live unconfined far from the Emerald Isle.
Rita Sauler from The Netherlands writes about our favorite early-season bromance.
Roses are red
Violets are blue
These two guys are friends
This much is true.
One has good ways
The other has none
And mostly with fun
They did take the oath
To stand with the clan
And fight to the death
Like real Scottish men
But war took their lives
It was sad to hear
That Angus and Rupert
Were no longer here.
Roses are red
Violets are blue
These two were friends
And this will stay true.
We get into a couple of pieces about the aristocracy! Jennifer Kiley gives us a short but vivid poem.
Lord John sat by the fire
Rollo gamboling at his feet
Time for a wee nip.
And Ashley Killeen writes about an, ummm…. different kind of couple.
An Ode to Sandringham’s True Love (in the style of Robert Burns)
Heaven bless the aching heart
What knows no joy when thrust apart
From the fair curls where true love start.
Neither youth, nor laird, could come between,
No war, nor Death in his droving cart,
A Duke so grand and his love plain seen.
But for whom, shall ye guess,
Is love written upon Sandringham’s breast?
And would a Duke ever full aloud confess?
Yea he would, and proudly too!
For in his hands, he shall caress
The soft sweet locks of a companion true.
When first they met, none quite know,
Nor does the Duke though his heart was a-glow.
Perhaps it was the wine or the ornate show,
But upon first meeting Cupid’s arrow did dig
In a Duke’s heart to cause stirring below,
And so sings the Ode of Sandringham and his wig!
Sandy Satten wrote about one of the more tragic figures of season 3, Elias Pound.
Strange Bedfellows: Claire and Elias Pound
Under duress their friendship did start
He, a mere boy, she,
a doctor at heart
Removed from her husband and stolen away
To handle a sickness as evil as plague.
Her sex didn’t help her to gain much respect but Elias Pound listened to all that she said.
He carried out orders and sometimes in awe, took her words to heart and enforced them as law.
A friendship developed, a mutual respect, that somehow flourished in the midst of the wreck.
He stood by her side, did his best to understand, They worked toward healing going man by man.
He shared a precious gift with Claire, a rabbit’s foot from mom.
But Alas, poor Elias did not know bad luck would come.
His luck ran out when he contracted the illness, Claire found him delirious, on the precipice of stillness.
She said comforting mom words and held his small hand. Although he was young he showed worth as a man.
A man of honor, her friend indeed, Her stitch was his last, before being cast out to sea.
With little fanfare, his life did end but not without mourning from Claire, his dear friend.
So to quote Mr. Shakespeare, tis true what they state, that misery does Strange Bedfellows make.
Men In Kilts
Our final group of entrants wrote about the newest “couple,” our men in kilts. Janet Clarke starts us out:
Scotland Has Shone Forth!
It all started,
this journey uncharted,
with Sam and his whisky, Graham and a latte, and plenty of tartan,
all piled into an old camper van, gaudy and spartan!
The day was bright,
the mood was light,
but leaving the carpark
was nae an easy lark!
Much to Graham’s chagrin,
wee Sam could nae remember how to begin.
The van was manual, you had to change gears
and Sam had only driven an automatic in recent years.
The old gearbox was soon sorely overworked,
Sam wanted his whisky uncorked,
whilst Graham was fast becoming distraught,
with his mortality at the front of his thoughts.
As the van screeched it’s way forward,
he prayed Sam would nae drive off a cliff, sending them skyward!
White knuckled, his thoughts turned to food,
he needed a snack NOW, to help regain a calmer mood.
Over another wee hill and around one more bend,
they reached a pub and ground to a halt.
Graham was soon fed and on the mend,
whilst Sam was relaxing, enjoying his second single malt.
Many adventures across land and sea, lay ahead,
Sam charging forth and Graham being led.
Some would be fun, but others filled poor Graham with dread,
Castles were visited,
a marathon disrupted.
Chieftains recounted Clan histories, regaling with the tales of the dead.
When the camper van needed a rest
all manner of bikes and boats were put to the test.
Fuelled by their friendship and fine local fare,
they’ve enthralled us with their travels, this unlikely Scottish pair.
Two men in kilts exploring the country of their birth,
through glens and brochs and battlefields, Scotland has shone forth!
And Martina Juranek is all ready for our new favorite show!
Men in Kilts,
Going on a road trip in the land of Scotland;
riding in a camper-van with Sam and Graham,
Checking out the culture and the Famous Battle of Culloden
Sam and Graham,
Friends before “Men in Kilts” opened the door,
to tell the story of what Scotland meant to them.
Food, Culture, and History
How Scotland is a mystery with its:
Kilts, Castles, Mountains, Language, and Lochs
Remember to check out the famous Lallybroch!
And always remember
“The Sassenach” –
“A place called Home”!
Happy Valentine’s Day!
to the “Dynamic Duo”,
Sam and Graham
Join us on our radio show, The Outlander Gab, to chat about the show tomorrow night, Tuesday, and every Tuesday while Men In Kilts is on! 9 pm eastern/8 central/6 pacific!
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