Friday, March 16, 2007

Happy St. Patrick's Day

The Burren, County Clare

My long post on Ireland won't be ready, so this will do in a pinch. A Happy St. Patrick's Day to everyone. Be good...

Remembering soft rain and strains of tin whistle,
Silver sounds, silvery strains, plaintiff playing tin

I find myself seeking Him in the old mystical places,
In the wild flowers that bloom on Inishmor,* bloom by the stonewalls of Aran,
Honeysuckle, gentian, thistle, and haws.
I see Him moving as the wild grasses do by the sea, in the breeze, on Inishmor.
Purple-headed grasses swaying, tinged with violet, tinged with regret.
I see Him as the silver birch, the young oak among the tamed conifers.
I see Him as the black raven hiding in the green marble mountains of Connemara.
I see Him as the red deer, the silver wolf, on the side of Slieve na mban.*
Cloaked in mountain cloth,
Embroidered with golden and purple threads of gorse and heather;
Lovingly woven by the women of the Gael.
Inishmor is full of walled gardens where wild herbs grow: Wild thyme, bittercress, and celandine.
My land is a walled garden perfumed by peat fires, bejeweled by their embers,
Filled with autumnal fruits: sloes, blackberries, rosehips, and elderberries.
As with the Druids of old, vanquished by the fruit of the Rowan Tree
These memories quicken me home.

--Paula Murphy

*"Inishmor" = Big Island, one of the three Aran Islands.
*"Slieve na mban" = mountain of the woman.

"According to the multitude of your mercies, cleanse my iniquity." (Psalm 51)

O star-like sun, O guiding light, O home of the planets,
O fiery-maned and marvelous one, O fertile, undulating, fiery sea,
O fiery glow, O fiery flame of judgment,

O holy storyteller, holy scholar, O full of holy grace, of holy strength,
O overflowing, loving silent one, O generous and thunderous giver of gifts,
O rock-like warrior of a hundred hosts,
O fair-crowned one, O victorious, skilled in battle,


--St. Ciaran, Sixth Century


Liam said...

Beannachtaí na Féile Pádraig, Jeff.

crystal said...

Happy St. Patrick's Day, Jeff :-)

Don said...

Happy St. Patrick's Day Jeff!!!

Paula said...

Happy Patrick´s Day, Jeff. (A little secret: sometimes I am Irish too).:-)

cowboyangel said...

Nice post, Jeff. Happy St. Patrick's Day.

It would have been even nicer if Notre Dame hadn't blown their game yesterday! Bums!

Jeff said...

Hi Liam and Crystal,

Latin is cool, but Irish Gaelic is even cooler. Crystal, I envy you for the nice weather today.

Hi Don,

Great to see you hear again! Slainte!


Happy to hear from the Romanian-Irish contingent. I had some corned beef and cabbage today in your honor. :-)


It would have been even nicer if Notre Dame hadn't blown their game yesterday!


Paula said...

Jeff, it sounds delicious. Thanks.:-).