The room’s charge

Made two hearts

Skip beats,

Raised hairs

On arms.

Love forbidden;

Scandal of the century.

Lancelot couldn’t resist


Forever lost to Arthur’s queen.

Their passion ruined the


But he had Guinevere.

Image: Public Domain via Wikipedia
Image: Public Domain via Wikipedia


TrifectaPicture11-1I find the story of Lancelot and Guinevere fascinating because it has it all:  betrayal, forbidden love, and extreme risk.  (I think being a trusted knight to the king and ‘stealing’ his queen is frowned upon and comes with a fair amount of risk!)

This is my response to Trifecta’s weekend challenge, which was to write 36 words which includes the words “charge,” “century,” and “lost.”  If you want to read other responses, or give the prompt a try yourself, click on the tricycle picture to view Trifecta’s site.  Have a great weekend!


78 thoughts on “Lost

  1. Kir April 19, 2013 / 8:26 AM

    I LOVE everything you write, but this one..wow. I adored it.
    My own heart pounded.

    GREAT JOB Janna.
    (I too love that century and the stories that came out of it)

    • jannatwrites April 19, 2013 / 8:36 AM

      Thanks so much, Kir! You know, I almost forgot one of the words – I re-read it before publishing and realized I lost the word “lost.” Oops 🙂 I’m glad I’m not the only one fascinated by that time period.

  2. atrm61 April 19, 2013 / 8:39 AM

    Ooh,I love this!What a lovely piece of history to focus on!:-)

    • jannatwrites April 19, 2013 / 8:43 AM

      Thanks, Atreyee! When I saw ‘century’ I knew I wanted to write this 🙂 I’m curious what others have done – I’m sure I’ll have lots of reading to do this weekend.

  3. coyotero2112 April 19, 2013 / 8:49 AM

    Think Art, Gwen, and Lance are to the love triangle what Romeo and Juliet are to boy and girl from opposite sides of the tracks in love stories. It’s such a tru-ism that there are only so many stories, all told with local costume and color and staged in the locale of the story teller. Always interesting to see what you do with these word limited challenges, and especially with the proscribed words. Lovely.

    • jannatwrites April 19, 2013 / 9:00 AM

      You’re right, Coyotero – many stories are just variations of these. If done right, the retelling can still feel new and interesting. I wish I had more words here to finish their story (which is not happily ever after.) I guess in the interest of word count, they can hang on the triumphant moment in this poem 🙂

      I appreciate you reading and sharing your thoughts on the poem. Always interesting to read your comments!

      • coyotero2112 April 19, 2013 / 9:48 AM

        Intersting? I better go back and read my comment. It’s too early to be intersting. Thanks again for your post. I need to study your work more…get a grip on brevity.

        • jannatwrites April 19, 2013 / 8:15 PM

          It’s never too early to be interesting! Study my work…I don’t know about that…there’s much better material out there 🙂

  4. SuziCate April 19, 2013 / 9:15 AM

    But he had Guinevere. – LOVE!

  5. deanabo April 19, 2013 / 9:35 AM

    This is terrific. I love how your worked in the words.

  6. nrhatch April 19, 2013 / 10:18 AM

    Well done, Janna.
    A great love story, indeed.

    • jannatwrites April 19, 2013 / 8:17 PM

      Thanks, Nancy. It was quite the story, indeed!

  7. Nenna April 19, 2013 / 10:37 AM

    I love the way you summed up such a huge love story in just 36 words. Well done!

    • jannatwrites April 19, 2013 / 8:18 PM

      Thanks, Nenna! I could’ve easily used 333 more words 🙂

  8. Debbie April 19, 2013 / 11:02 AM

    Can’t help loving a good love story, Janna! Well summarized, my friend!

    • jannatwrites April 19, 2013 / 8:19 PM

      Thanks, Debbie! Their story is a fascinating/sad one.

  9. Sean April 19, 2013 / 1:11 PM

    Interesting poem and use of the words given. You have a very talented thought process for words. It is always a pleasure to see what you write. Thank you

    • jannatwrites April 19, 2013 / 8:21 PM

      Thanks for the kind words, Sean. I’m glad you stopped by and enjoyed the poem!

  10. Maggie April 19, 2013 / 1:17 PM

    One of the greatest love stories in 36 words…brilliant!

  11. GodGirl April 19, 2013 / 3:08 PM

    What a powerful final line – this is stunning Janna.

    • jannatwrites April 19, 2013 / 8:22 PM

      I’m glad that line stood out for you, GodGirl. Thanks for reading!

  12. Carrie April 19, 2013 / 5:44 PM

    I love the myth of lancelot and gwen :). Great job!.

    • jannatwrites April 19, 2013 / 8:23 PM

      Thanks, Carrie! Their story is an intense one.

  13. Gina April 19, 2013 / 5:45 PM

    I love their love story. Always have! Perfect choice for this prompt!

    • jannatwrites April 19, 2013 / 8:24 PM

      Thanks, Gina! It probably would’ve been better to think of something original…but I couldn’t get them out of my head 🙂

    • jannatwrites April 19, 2013 / 8:25 PM

      Thanks so much, Renee. I’m glad there are several others who are captivated by their story as much as I am!

  14. mairzeebp April 19, 2013 / 6:25 PM

    Loved it!

  15. Eric Alagan April 19, 2013 / 8:23 PM

    The story of the perfect knight with human imperfections is always a captivating read. Loved this piece Janna.

    Have a great weekend, Eric

    • jannatwrites April 19, 2013 / 8:26 PM

      ‘Perfect knight with human imperfections’ – I like how you put that, Eric. Thanks for sharing your thoughts on the poem!

  16. pattisj April 19, 2013 / 10:01 PM

    You make these look so easy, Janna. Then I read the requirements, and think, “What?!”

    • jannatwrites April 20, 2013 / 12:38 AM

      You’re funny, Patti! I will admit the weekend ones are tricky with the exact word count…the weekday ones have a bit more freedom. Either way, I like the aggravation, I mean, challenge 🙂 Thanks for reading!

  17. rebecca2000 April 20, 2013 / 12:09 PM

    It’s great. I am always fascinated by the story too.

  18. rangewriter April 20, 2013 / 12:39 PM

    Well done! Shining up an old tale and wrapping it a tiny little challenge!

    • jannatwrites April 20, 2013 / 10:42 PM

      Thanks, Rangewriter! I’m glad you stopped by 🙂

  19. Valerie April 20, 2013 / 1:45 PM

    Forbidden love is very inspiring indeed, and I always loved this story too! Knights in shining armor…good stuff!

    • jannatwrites April 20, 2013 / 10:43 PM

      Yeah, he was the ultimate knight in shining armor! Their forbidden love came at a high cost. I’m glad you like the story too, Valerie…there seem to be many Camelot fans around these parts 🙂

  20. Lance April 20, 2013 / 5:17 PM

    ahhh, my namesake, the player. I like how you formatted this. well written, janna.

    • jannatwrites April 20, 2013 / 10:45 PM

      Well, he was a gutsy one, at least. Making a play for the queen isn’t the smartest move 🙂 Thanks for reading, Lance!

  21. Draug419 April 20, 2013 / 5:19 PM

    The girl is all that matters. 😉 I love this take on the tale!

    • jannatwrites April 20, 2013 / 10:45 PM

      Thanks, Draug! That pretty much sums it up- he got the girl (for a while, at least :))

  22. barbara April 20, 2013 / 5:23 PM

    love, love, love Arthurian tales . . . so much so that hubbymoose’s name IRL is Arthur. 🙂

    • jannatwrites April 20, 2013 / 10:50 PM

      How fun, Barbara! It’s funny, because several years ago when my older son was in first grade, he was into Magic Treehouse books. Morgan le Fay, Merlin and Arthur were all part of the series. I kind of enjoyed Jack and Annie’s adventures 🙂

  23. trifectawriting April 20, 2013 / 6:54 PM

    I love this because it tells a whole story, and even though it’s a story we’ve heard before it feels new.

    Thanks for linking up!

    • jannatwrites April 20, 2013 / 10:51 PM

      I’m so glad that this felt like “new”. I was concerned that by doing this subject, it would come off as just a summary.

    • jannatwrites April 20, 2013 / 10:52 PM

      Thanks, Linda! I liked that photo, too (thanks, Wikipedia :))

  24. jenniesisler April 21, 2013 / 5:07 AM

    An amazing summation of the Lancelot/Guienevere story in only 33 words….I couldn’t have done it. Love the photo and the sense of desperate love your poem creates.

    • jannatwrites April 21, 2013 / 10:09 PM

      I appreciate your comment, Jennie! I’m glad you enjoyed the poem 🙂

  25. Suzanne April 21, 2013 / 11:16 AM

    This is gorgeous Janna! Love the intensity. Great use of the prompt words!

    • jannatwrites April 21, 2013 / 10:10 PM

      I’m glad you liked the poem, Suzanne. Their story was an intense one!

  26. ramshanasir April 21, 2013 / 12:28 PM

    This is beautiful and the last line….ooh, it gave me a thrill. Love it!

    • jannatwrites April 21, 2013 / 10:11 PM

      I appreciate you reading, Ramshanasir!

  27. Dana April 21, 2013 / 1:09 PM

    I have always found Sir Lancelot super sexy but your last line nailed me… (no pun intended, I swear!). Oh, the knight in shining armor, who could resist that?! 😉

    • jannatwrites April 21, 2013 / 10:16 PM

      Hahaha! Great comment, Dana! I can see the appeal – there’s a certain attractiveness of a man who would risk the wrath of the king (and his life) for love 🙂

  28. Shreya Kashyap April 21, 2013 / 2:43 PM

    such a nice paraphrasing …. ! I simply love your writing Janna ! 🙂

    • jannatwrites April 21, 2013 / 10:17 PM

      Thank you so much, Shreya. I appreciate you taking time to read it!

  29. Sarah Ann April 21, 2013 / 2:52 PM

    Really enjoyed your re-telling – very touching.

  30. KymmInBarcelona April 21, 2013 / 3:57 PM

    Yes, love and its cost. Great retelling!

    • jannatwrites April 21, 2013 / 10:18 PM

      Their love did come at great cost. Thanks for reading, Kymm!

  31. lovethebadguy April 21, 2013 / 10:33 PM

    Arthurian legend is ripe for parody. A great tale! Well done.

    (Incidentally, have you ever watched BBC’s “Merlin”? Great show…) 😉

    • jannatwrites April 22, 2013 / 8:55 AM

      Thanks for stopping by, LTBG! I haven’t seen that BBC show…I’ll have to see if I can get it in my area.

  32. unevenstevencu April 21, 2013 / 11:38 PM

    enjoyed reading this – and like the italics at the end just the right amount of emphasis

    • jannatwrites April 22, 2013 / 8:56 AM

      Thanks, Unevensteven. I appreciate your comment!

  33. Sandra April 22, 2013 / 8:32 PM

    I haven’t come across this legend in a long time, and this rendition made me smile–“But he had Guinevere.” How amazing you did this in 36 words!

    • jannatwrites April 22, 2013 / 10:33 PM

      Aw, thanks so much, Sandra! It was a challenging poem to do – getting an exact word count can be frustrating at times (but you know that, don’t you? :))

  34. Imelda April 24, 2013 / 7:33 PM

    Very well done, Janna. Sigh…even then, personal interests put the greater good at risk.

    • jannatwrites April 24, 2013 / 8:04 PM

      Thanks, Imelda! Sometimes it serves us well to think outside ourselves.

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