What can it be that makes me sad?
I surely can't be turning mad,
And yet, indeed tis very plain,
I am in love, let me think again,
It cannot be for love is bliss,
Not a heart rending thing like this,
Tis true there's one bewitching being,
And one whom I can scarce help seeing,
Who makes me everytime we meet,
Pain to say something wondrous sweet,
But how it is you won't believe,
My memory is a perfect sieve,
And pretty speeches fly: you laugh,
Just as the whirlwind blows the chaff,
And then I feel so quite put out,
'Tis no great wonder that I pout,
Besides you know, Tis wracking pain,
To love and not to be loved again,
And if the matter should thus be,
What shall I do? Come, let's see,
Well I'll turn poet and I'll sing,
That loving is a desperate thing,
But this won't do for sure enough,
They'll say tis canting childish stuff,
When then I'll try, well what d'ye say,
I'll mourn and fret for one sort day
And h'eart after as I may.
One of John Wilson's lonely love poems to Elizabeth Hughes in 1833.
" I have these wonderful homes, and no one to share them with"- Danielle Steel
The story I am about to tell you gives me chills up and down my spine. Something Danielle Steel has never really done for me.
It was a romantic, yet, quite a tragic tale that caused the last fatal duel in Canada in 1833.
Imagine two law student suitors, if you will, out of the same time period that bore Pride and Prejudice.
But, there was no Mr Darcy, no romantic dances, and absolutely no stolen kisses.
Robert Lyon was a suave gentlement that liked to flirt with the ladies, and John Wilson was betrothed to another, but they both loved Elizabeth Hughes.
The sweet young Governess was in over her head with both Lyon and Wilson, and gossip ran amok about her in the fair town.
"A bad review is like baking a cake with all the best ingredients and having someone sit on it"- Danielle Steel
Mr. Wilson, after some thought and discussion, challenged Lyon to a duel.
At six am on June 13th, 1833 both Lyon and Wilson went to the clearing now known as The Last Duel Park in Perth, Ontario.
There the duel was fought standing sixty feet apart with Robert Lyon ending up the clear loser after the second attempt. His lifeless body was carried back to the Radenhurst house.
Wilson was shut away in the Perth jail for three months until his case could be heard Brockville. He acted as his own lawyer, and his passionate defence resulted in his acquittal.Yes,Wilson made the jury see how desperate, and lonely he was to commit such a love crime.
"I've shut myself inside these walls, and I'm going to be a very lonelt old lady if I'm not careful"-Danielle Steel
Robert Lyon was buried in the Last Duel Cemetery, where his tombstone still stands today.
John Wilson eventually married Elizabeth Hughes, but it was not a happy union. I wonder why.
"Sometimes, if you aren't sure about something, you just have to just jump off the bridge and maybe grow wings on the way down."- Danielle Steel
The pistol set from the fatal duel lies still at the Perth, Ontario Museum. The former farmland around the area where the love duel occurred is now known as Last Duel Park.
Today I visited the grave of Robert Lyon and swore I could still hear the whispers of his tears.
"I wrote because I needed to and wanted to. It never occurred to me that I'd become famous." - Danielle Steel
Images and words by Linda Seccaspina
Yes, that is my Duell game
Duel Picture from Google
Picture of Duel from "A Matter of Honour" site.