The Northern Kin

Oh the southern lands breed friendly folk,
Who treat you as if you were kin;
But for martial prowess and deeds of arms
Give me a German or Finn;
A German, a Russian, or a Finn.

For the Finns do like their privacy,
And lots of room to breathe.
They'll walk right up to a Viking chief
And tell him plain to leave.

Of those who learned the lesson quick
And hastened on their way,
Some settled in the eastern lands
And learned from Greeks to pray.

But when the Russians travel west
Their tempers tend to fray,
For those damn Finns are still right there,
And standing in their way!

So the Russians readily fight the Finns,
On far too many a day,
And the Finns will fight the Swedes and Danes
Come any small reason that may.

The Germans trade with all of them,
But if the time is right,
With Finn or Viking or Russian they
Are happy to have a fight.

So pray God help the southener
Who enters in the fray,
For else the fool has little chance
To see another day!

At painting, or dancing, or cookery,
The French or Italians will win.
But for feats of arms or martial might
Give me the northern kin:
A Russian, a German, or a Finn!

Copyright © 2004 by Green Sky Press.  All rights reserved.

This poem also appears in my novel The Last-Minute Queen, where it's credited to a fictional character.