I've been out for the last few days to attend my brother's wedding (no. 2)
in Delaware and came back to find 500 messages in my inbox, from the
various lists I'm on. Sad to say, few from C-L were Celtic in nature, so
here goes a few possibilities:
1. At the aforementioned wedding, the service was a Presbyterian church.
This was the first time at a P church for me, and I noticed that the
words to the Lord's Prayer had been changed from "forgive us our
trespasses' to "forgive us our debts". Now I understand that the P's,
bein' Scottish, would naturally be much more concerned with their
debts than their trespasses, but I'd be curious of any other changes
made and why they made that one. Also, if anyone can speak to why
Knox was so popular in Scotland, I'd be glad to listen/read it.
2. I just got "The Long Black Veil" by the Chieftans with various artists
and would highly recommend it to anyone (I especially liked 'Mo Ghile
Mear' with Sting and the "Coast of Malabar" with Ry Cooder). Anyone
have any other recommendations of such
joint efforts (and yes, I already have the Chieftans with Van
3. I've been mulling this one over for a few weeks. Ya know, I've read
quite a lot on the Sovereignity goddess in literature lately, and I
have come to the bold conclusion that the darn concept has been taken way
too far in the interpretation of medieval poetry/writings. I would not
discount the belief in such a goddess in ancient Ireland but I think that
those scholars out there who have taken in the concept hook-line-and
sinker have done so to the detriment to other lines of thought. Seems to
me that folks are reading waaay too much into that infamous passage in
Giraldus Cambrensis aboot the fella having sex with the horse. Gerald was
much too prone to feeding his readers a bunch of nonsense in his writings.
Okay, here's the poem. This is from our library's new copy of "Dafydd ap
Gwilym, a Selection of Poems" ed. by Rachel Bromwich.
May And January
Greetings, splendid greenwood choir,
Summer's May month--since for that I long--
strong horseman, lover's recompense,
with a green fetter mastering the wild forest,
the friend of love and the freind of birds;
lovers are mindful of him, their kinsman he is,
ambassador for nine score lovers' trysts
for honourable, loving dialogue.
By Mary, it is a delightful thing
that May, the perfect month, is on the way,
intent--in ardent affirmation of his rank--
upon the conquest of each verdant glen.
In a dense screen, the clothing of the high-roads,
he has dresed all places in his web of green.
When there comes, after battle with the frost,
the tent of thick leaves to invigorate the fields,
green will be the paths of May
succeeding April (birds' chirping is my faith);
on topmost branches of the oak will come
the singing of the new-fledged birds,
and the cuckoo high over each land,
and a songster; with a long and joyful day,
and white mist-haze after the wind
protects the middle of the valley,
and sky at afternoon is clear and glad
with green trees and fresh gossamer,
and crowds of birds upon the trees,
and fresh leaves on forest saplings,
and Morfudd my golden girl, will come to mind
with all love's seven-times-nine tumultuous turns.
All unlike to the sad black month
which rebukes everyone for loving,
and brings short days and depressing rain,
and wind that will despoil the trees,
and weakness--terrifying frailty--
a trailing cloak with rain and hail,
incitement to high tides, and colds,
grey flooding water-courses down the valleys,
rivers in spate with raucous noise,
and day-time sad and wearisome,
skies overcast, sombre and chill,
their hue hiding us from the moon.
Let there come to him--threat that's easy to predict--
evil two-fold for his boorishness!