We have come to this place to affirm our
love for Danny, but in doing so we reaffirm our love for each other and
the Scots-bond amongst us. We are the Highlanders for whom there are no
hearts bolder, braver or finer. Our loves are pure and sweet and our
loyalties, true and freely given. Once a friend, we are friends for
life. Danny showed and told these things in every word, action and deed
to us all.
Danny is/was my BEST FRIEND. I called him Brother for 25 years.
Throughout those few short days, I had the pleasure to collaborate with
him on his short stories, poetry, Scottish Games, Celtic Festivals and
life itself. We did not see each other daily or weekly; but anytime, day
or night, we were always on the other end of the phone and available to
lend a hand in whatever mischief was afoot.
Sometimes, when Danny felt the need, he would write a poem or some prose
about a special person in his life. On 28 October 1995, Danny gave me a
very precious gift. A short poem written about and for me entitled
ďGREEN CASTLES.Ē If you would be so kind as to allow me to recite my
rewritten version of:
ďDANNYíS GREEN CASTLE.Ē
Oh, I am a Scotsman of the days, have
crossed the mighty peaks,
And many wonders I have seen that did marvel and greatly please.
But of all the splendors I have known, for one does my heart sing?
Itís the sight of home I hunger, the Green Castle of the King.
Great battles I have won and lost, some large and some small,
But the Greatest Joy is having friends. Itís You, one and all.
We have pitched our tents, drank our Mead and let our voices ring,
High upon the Mountain, the Green Castle of the King.
Knoxville was my birthplace. Johnson City, I called home.
At ETSU, I spent my youth and from Green Valley, I never roamed.
We never spoke of such things. Just had a rowdy fling.
Enjoying the great friendships on the Green Castle of the King.
Yes, I am a son of the mountains, of its Highlands peaks and glens,
And I am certain, more determined, that itís there my voyage ends.
In the hills of my youth, my childhood, Where moss to the old rock
For itís there I am safe, protected, in the Green Castle of the King.
Please sit upon that big rock; that everybody knows
As the campsite of Fort Potter and youíll feel its warming glow.
Remembered as part Cherokee, part writer and not mean,
Iíve listened to the spirits there on the Green Castle of the King.
To faraway lands Iíve journeyed, great deeds and accomplishments done;
But, homeward my heart still wonders, in the rays of the setting sun.
My eyes mist oíer in memory, sweet tears of loneliness sting,
For I long to see the splendor of the Green Castle of the King.
At last, Iíve homeward set my course and nevermore to roam.
For Iíll return to stay there and never again leave home.
Humbly, back to the start of my journeys, with some of the memories I
My banner to fly high from the ramparts, of the Green Castle of the
The Green Castle is the Mountain called Grandfather all these years,
And itís there Iím safe and happy, relieved of all doubts and fears.
My poetry went with me to comfort ancestral pleas,
ĎCause you know where best Iím suited and the nature of home I need.
So, if you seek Dannyís company, then let your feet take wing and
Climb HIGH upon the mountain. The Green Castle of the King.
William Hal Morrison, Jr.