Friday Fictioneers #8 Kingdom of the Mind


“Bloody good find! It’s Shakespeare!”

“Don’t be so quick about it,” Sir Waverly warned his Stratfordian colleague Hitchbottom. “We can’t attribute this poem to the Bard. Have you forgotten the 17th Earl of Oxford once lived in and lost this house too?”

“Damn to bloody hell that villain, Edward de Vere! He left his bleedin’ fingerprints all over the page.”

“And Shakespeare’s as well.”

“If we say Oxford wrote this sonnet everyone will know who authored the works of Shakespeare. Let’s say Marlowe did it.”

“That would be problematic.”


“Wrong rhyme.”


“Wrong time.”

“Michael Drayton?”

“Splendid. I’ll ring the press.”


What saith the world is aught to me,
So saith they that fortune’s envy breed,
As I chase fey muse over sun spilled sea,
My kingdom dissolves in fact, in deed.

From worldly acts come naught but trouble.
Tis ever & always a wall’s destiny to fall
& monuments too soon collapse to rubble.
To woo, thy muse must burn and consume all.

Dare I care what dissolution they see
So long soars my muse, soul shackle-freed?
By troth, what saith the world is all to me.
Thus hide I my name in invented weed

Until those who breathe this air have passed
then reign o’er my kingdom of mind EVER last.


I added the sonnet in case you were curious to know what our literary sleuths uncovered. Some believe that William Shakespeare wrote this poem (note the usage of “invented weed” similar to the line “to keep invention in a noted weed” in Sonnet 76), while others attribute it to Edward de Vere, the 17th Earl of Oxford (“My Mind To Me A Kingdom Is” is a poem attributed to Sir Edward Dyer that some believe was written by de Vere). Oxford is often cited by the sacrilegious as the man who really wrote the plays and poems of Shakespeare. However due to this sonnet’s many imperfections of meter and rhyme most authorities now believe a lesser poet wrote the poem. Some even suspect that I may have had something to do with it ツ

And yes, I am an Oxfordian having a little fun with the authorship question.

This story was written for the Friday Fictioneers, a group dedicated to crafting flash fiction pieces of a 100 words with the inspiration of a photo prompt. Thanks to our gifted facilitator Rochelle Wisoff-Fields and to Sarah Ann Hall for a wonderful photo prompt. You can view  stories from the rest of the Friday Fictioneers here.

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18 Responses to Friday Fictioneers #8 Kingdom of the Mind

  1. Helena Hann-Basquiat says:

    Thanks for this clever tale — and for the explanation afterward!

  2. I’d never heard of Michael Drayton, but I have now via Wikispeare. 🙂 Sounds like he had more than one drink with the Bard and friends, but the Bard never recovered. That’s some party!!!


  3. nightlake says:

    interesting and informative. Did you write it? :))

    • Mystikel says:

      I had to write the poem to add as back story, yes, lol. The fun satirical story was 100 words (give or take) but the “back story” poem had to sound like a Shakespearean style sonnet penned by Oxford. It’s fun to indulge a favorite subject of yours every once in a while.

  4. annesquared says:

    Excellent! (Those are some names I haven’t heard in many years.) Looks like you had a great time with it 🙂

  5. Mystikel says:

    I think I just felt like amusing myself this week. Glad you enjoyed it too 🙂

  6. Dear Kelly,
    Thanks for amusing yourself this week and taking me along to enjoy the fun.

  7. Very enjoyable.. and that sonnet you created sound very authentic… great write.

  8. Wow, there’s a lot of literary and historical background woven into this one. Quite impressive.

  9. Sarah Ann says:

    Very funny. 🙂 Enjoyed this historical romp.

  10. Shreyank says:

    your certainly made it really convincing ! made me feel like reading the Life of Pi.. for most part i thought he had written a true story ! 🙂

  11. misskzebra says:

    I only ever knew that it was suspected Christopher Marlowe wrote Shakespeare’s plays. I always meant to do more research, and never got around to it, unfortunately.

  12. What an amazing piece of work.
    And to go to the trouble of creating a sonnet!
    Totally impressed!

  13. Good fun! Loved the sonnet too, despite the “many imperfections of meter and rhyme”.

  14. Art Neuendorffer says:

    What an amazing piece of work!

    And to go to the trouble of creating a sonnet
    …with Edward de Vere’s Latin name: *VERUS*
    encoded twice as Equidistant Letter Sequences:
    . Whatsaiththeworldisa [U] ghttomeS
    . osaiththeythatfortun [E]’sENVYbre
    . edAsIchasefeymuseove [R] sunspill
    . edseaMykingdomdissol [V] esinfact
    . indeedFromworldlyact [S] comenaug
    . htbuttrouble
    [UERVS] 29 : Prob. in first 5 lines ~ 1 in 185
    . DareIcarewhatdi {S} solut iontheyseeSolo
    . ngsoarsmymuseso {U} lshac klefreedByTROT
    . Hwhatsaiththewo {R} ldisa lltomeThushide
    . Imynameininvent {E} DWEED Untilthosewhob
    . reathethisairha {V} epass edthenreignoer
    . mykingdomofmind {E} VERla st
    {E.VERUS} -35 : Prob. in last 6 lines ~ 1 in 3900
    Brilliant. Totally impressed!

    – Art Neuendorffer

  15. Mystikel says:

    The skip code was unintentional but very cool to know that it’s there! Thank you.

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