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Bring up the bodies

King Henry is having lot of problems. His wife Anne is not very faithful to him. At least that is what the people talk. His ex-wife Catherine who is under house arrest is plotting against him. The pope is against him for divorcing the first wife and he is threatening to ex-communicate him. And to top it all, the king does not have a male heir to the throne. Which is one of the reasons for divorcing Catherine - and defying Rome.

But there is a person to think, ponder and try to solve all these problems. He is Thomas Cromwell, master secretary and king's right hand man. He is so much devoted to the king that when he hears about the pregnancy of the queen Anne, he immediately talks to the family of Jane Seymour about how she can be of king's service. He encourages king to completely ignore Pope. He goes to visit ex-wife Catherine to ensure that she is not planning something against the king or queen. 

But Cromwell is a sad man. He has lost his wife and two daughters few years back. He is not having any titles but master.

Cromwell is the son of a black smith and has struggled his way to the palace. And hence he knows the hurdles faced by such hard working and ambitious youth. He keeps such youngsters in his house from various nations and trains them. Trains them for king's service. 

Lot of events occur. Ex-queen Catherine dies. Anne has miscarriage. Now king starts finding ways to get rid of her and dreams of marrying Jane. 

 

If you feel reading about kings and queens, and not from our country is tedious, you are wrong. The book "Bring up the bodies" by is never boring and takes you to that era.

One sample:

Being with king is like being in the company of a tamed lion. You play with it, but all the time you keep thinking "those claws, those claws, those claws."


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Someshwara shataka

ಚರಿಪಾರಣ್ಯದ ಪಕ್ಷಿಗೊಂದು ತರು ಗೊಡ್ಢಾಗಲ್ ಫಲಂ ಈವಿದಾ
ಮರಗಳ್ ಪುಟ್ಟವೆ ಪುಷ್ಪವೊಂದು ಬಳಲಲ್  ಭ್ರಂಗಕ್ಕೆ ಪೂವಿಲ್ಲವೆ
ನಿರತಂ ಸತ್ಕವಿಗೋರ್ವ ಗರ್ವಿದಂ ನೃಪ ತಾಂ ಲೋಭಿಯಾಗಲ್ ನಿಜಂ
ಧರೆಯೊಳ್ ದಾತರು ಪುಟ್ಟರೆ ಹರ ಹರಾ ಶ್ರೀ ಚೆನ್ನ ಸೋಮೇಶ್ವರ

Will a bird in the wild go hungry just because one fruit tree dries up? If one flower withers, will not the bee get any flowers? If one haughty king is miserly, will there be no patrons (of poetry) on this earth?


ಕೆಲವಂ ಬಲ್ಲವರಿಂದ ಕಲ್ತು ಕೆಲವಂ ಶಾಸ್ತ್ರಂಗಳೋದುತಂ
ಕೆಲವಂ ಮಾಳ್ಪವರಿಂದ ಕಂಡು ಕೆಲವಂ ಸುಜ್ಙಾನದಿಂ  ನೋಡುತಂ
ಕೆಲವಂ ಸಜ್ಜನಸಂಗದಿಂದಲರಿಯಲ್ ಸರ್ವಜ್ಞನಪ್ಪಂ ನರಂ
ಪಲವಂ ಪಳ್ಳ ಸಮುದ್ರವೈ ಹಾರ ಹರಾ ಶ್ರೀ ಚೆನ್ನ ಸೋಮೇಶ್ವರ

Learning from wise men, reading from good books, observing others  work and learning from good company, these are the ways a man becomes omni-scient (sarvajna - one who knows everything). Just like many streams join together to make an ocean.

P.S.
1) If you find some of my wordings in this shataka is wrong, please let me know. It is a 40 year old memory.
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