The Story Of Chess

Chess


Each game
of chess
means there's
one less
vari-
ation left to be played

Each day
got through
means one
or two
less mi-
stakes remain to be made

Not much is known
Of early days of chess beyond a fairly vague report
that fifteen hundred years ago two princes faught
Tough brothers for a Hindi throne

The mother cried
For no one really likes their offspring fighting to the death
She begged to stop the slaughter with her every breath
but sure enough one brother died

Sad
beyond belief
she told her winning son
You
have caused such grief
I can't forgive
this evil thing you've done

He
tried to explain
how things had really been
But
he tried in vain
No words of his
could mollify the queen

And so he asked
the wisest men he knew the way to lessen her distress
They told him he'd be pretty certain to impress
by using model soldiers on a checkuered board
to show it was his brother's fault
- He thus invented chess

Chess
displayed no inertia
soon spread to Persia
then west

Next
the Arabs refined it
thus redesigned - it
progressed

Still further west
And when Constantinople fell in fourteen fiftythree
One would have noticed every other refugee
included in his bags a set

Once in the hands
And in the minds of leading figures of the Renaissance
The spirit and the speed of chess made swift advance
through all of Europe's vital lands

Where
we must record
the game was further changed
Right
across the board
The western touch
upon the pieces ranged

King
and queen and rook
and bishop, knight and pawn
All
took on the look
we know today
- the modern game was born

And in the end
we see a game that started by mistake in Hindustan
and boosted in the main by what is now Iran
become the simplest and most complicated
pleasure yet divised for just the kind of mind
who would appriciate this well-researched and fascinating
yarn

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