Henrietta's Bridge at Boynton by Alan Lowey who notes that there's plenty of room to shelter underneath
THE RAVEN QUEEN
Oscar Wilde wrote a wild romantic poem about Henrietta, in which he referred to her raven hair (see below). She owned a monkey and a midget*, and she was everything to Charles. (And it seems from her journal that she felt the same about him). She was small but very strong-willed, and it's possible that it was her influence that led to Charles's intransigence with Parliament and his ultimate downfall.
Her protector was actually a Priest, but Tom didn't know that when he wrote the song. Also, it seems she and Charles may have spent time together after York, but the end result was the same. She died, aged 50, in France.
*Tom has since learned that most European Royal Households had 'Court Dwarfs,' as they should correctily be termed. James 1 had a huge Court Jester - the last in an English Court - called Muckle John (as celebrated by the wonderful Cloudstreet )
I’ve served the house of Stuart, since I was but a child
There was never a huntsman so loyal
And I’ll not forget the day, the Prince’s horse ran wild
And I saved his young bacon so Royal
Maybe that is why he called me on that day
When the thunderclouds of war were all around us
And if I had only known, what my Sovereign would say
I’d have run till they never could have found us
"My army needs more shot and the powders running thin
I must sell any baubles for the making
So my Sweet Henrietta, my rare my Raven Queen
To the Netherlands the Crown Jewels is taking
Will you go, will you go, will you stay by her side?
Will you save my brave Raven Queen?”
Not for the King, nor the sorrow in his eyes,
Nor for your country so green-o
Not even for the crown that Parliament despise
Just for my Raven Queen - o, only for my Raven Queen
She was pale as the moon but there was fire in her eyes
As we sailed with our cargo of treasure
And for her proud and tiny frame I knew I’d gladly die
And for her I would meet any measure
We laid the riches out, and she haggled hard and long
With the armourers of Amsterdam and Arnheim
And who was I to say if they was right or they were wrong
With the heavy hand of history upon them
But on the journey home, there came a dreadful storm
And for nine days and nights we were a-tossing
But Henrietta knew the Queen of England must not drown
It was for her King and Country she was crossing
And I stood in the bow, so proud by her side
Ready to save my brave Raven Queen
Exhausted to the core to Bridlington we came
But Cromwell’s heavy guns they were awaiting,
And the hell-fire and the brimstone came pouring down like rain
I dared to grab her hand, we ran escaping
Beneath the bridge at Boynton for three long nights and days
We hid while the enemy came searching
And underneath my cloak the Queen of England lay
And my hunter's heart was filled to bursting
To York we came at last, but alas we came to late
For Charles he was away in chains to London
And I saw the very moment when she knew what was his fate
And that raven heart rent asunder
And knew I must go, into exile by her side
To save my Brave Raven Queen
Oscar Wilde wrote:
She stands with eyes marred by the mist of pain,
Like some wan Lilly overdrenched with rain,
The clamorous clangs of arms, the ensanguined sky,
Wars ruin, and the wreck of chivalry,
Bravely she tarrieth for her Lord the King,
Her soul a-flame with passionate ecstacy.
O Hair of Raven! O crimson lips!
O face made for the luring and the love of man!
"With thee I do forget the toil & stress,
The loveless road that knows no resting place,
Times straightened pulse, the soul's dread weariness,
My freedom and my life...."
Thanks to Bob who I met at Beverley Festival and who first told me about Henrietta's Bridge. TB.