Once his brown alpargata shoes trod countless miles,
imagination burst from his vivid, traveler's eyes...
He traversed valleys leading to azure mountains,
and heard a chant sung with vivacious tones.
Like the invaders of the past that built sturdy castles
on rugged hills, he intruded in those ghostly places...
expecting swift lancers with fierce glances ready to attack him,
or take him prisoner and toss him in a dungeon completely dim.
But with his slick tongue, he would kindly ask for a fair trail
and be scolded by the drunken King with the fattest tummy
to explain with a few words his intrusion in that well-guarded territory;
and looking so young and innocent, his plan for deception wouldn't fail!
" Oh, mighty Frederick II...I come in peace and as a conquered native,
I would bow in admiration to be of service to your kingdom,
which extends from Naples to Sicily, your mercy is imperative...
may your soldiers unlock these heavy chains that make me lame!"
The Norman King with the bluest eyes ordered the knights
to free him and waited for words to flow from his mouth with dry lips, " My great
King, I have grown grapes that are so juicy to eat with bread and they make
the most delicious wine to bring merriment to your festive nights!"
" Where's this region you mention with such wonder and delirium?"
With red-inflamed pupils, King Frederick II asked him. And he traveler's deep voice
vibrated with loud excitement , " Into the valley of Baianum!"
" Let me out of this castle and I will show the purple grapes of a farmer's choice!"
" Let him loose!" ordered the tall, fair king. " Give him the fastest horse,
and let him bring me proof of his finding!" The soldiers obeyed with reluctance,
but little trust they showed in him: they assumed he was another well-paid jester,
who performed his comedy well...they knew the cleverness of that young traveler!