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Poetry Magnum Opus

On the Hill of Howth


dedalus
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High on the Hill of Howth,

abreast with the smacking winds,

I thought how I loved this country,

and knew I could not stay.


Ireland is small, reduced,

alive with its fierce and miniature dramas,

sucking out one’s spirit and blood,

returning songs and poetry, little else.


Life will return with action,

with movement across fields and prairies,

in the adoption of smiling moments,

the conquest of cities and towns.


Life is only fulfilled abroad,

in the clamour of the streets,

in heroic deeds at lonely outposts,

with the fatal squeeze on city councils.


We are everywhere,

in the manner of musical locusts,

and in bearing up people with song,

we carry the bruiséd world along.

Drown your sorrows in drink, by all means, but the real sorrows can swim

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Excellent piece that in some ways reflects the current European flow of migrants in search of better lives...The Irish however, have set a high precedent-- for their contribution to the human spirit is outstanding. "Out of adversity comes strength." Your folk tradition in particular is second to none; promoting attitudes to life that in Olympic terms deserve a gold medal. Irish bars across the world are oases of conviviality and good company. I love that last stanza

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What a perfectly suitable last stanza to make even a crude Georgia boy understand the culture and history of you brilliant rascals. For sure, you know who you are and especially who you are not. May we have more, please?

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Yes, well, I know exactly who who we are, like a crowd of Aztecs pushed into a mine elevator and whooshed up into the late 16th and early 17th centuries, which is when the loss and recovery of the ancient Gaelic past begins ... after 3000 years of ancient insolent isolation. The Elizabethans wanted to treat us like the Indians of Virginia but we were always two or three steps ahead.

 

Anois, Bren

Drown your sorrows in drink, by all means, but the real sorrows can swim

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"The Elizabethans wanted to treat us like the Indians of Virginia but we were always two or three steps ahead."

 

As always. The Aztecs claim I shall, of course, investigate. We rednecks are wary, especially of blacks--Irish, that is. I do know that St Brendan was around these parts long before the Geneon idiot.

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Plus don't forget the Vikings who landed in Canada (and left archaeological remains) long before Columbus. I suspect the New Continent or New World was not that new or surprising to fishermen and mariners of Europe. One can almost guarantee that the Vikings landed ... after St. Brendan, of course!

Drown your sorrows in drink, by all means, but the real sorrows can swim

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Oh yes, Brendan, I do know that. I know that the Vikings could not conquer you lot, because you were never a whole lot but regional lots. I know you were daring and on the seas without a compass, like you still are. (You do get the compass part, right?) How else could there be red-haired Creeks? But does your uniqueness matter at all? You are a crabby old study and I try to follow in your spoor. So what? The black whore you loved momentarily has as much claim to tribal fealty and oneness as any gnome from a chunk of land clinging to a self-proclaimed deity. Still...you silly asses do write...

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Calm down, Paco, before you have an embolism. The fact is there is no other place I CAN write about with the same feelings of fond irritation and affectionate (if exasperated) annoyance.

Drown your sorrows in drink, by all means, but the real sorrows can swim

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What is the "a" in Imao?? Affectionate, aggressive, anodyne, apathetic, antediluvian, arsehole-scratching, able, antsy-pantsy,

Aloyisius my favourite teddy bear?

Drown your sorrows in drink, by all means, but the real sorrows can swim

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I usually don't bother with fantasy tales, but I would recommend the 'Outlander' series now running. Though I know there are differences in Scottish and Irish Gaelic, I'm sure you would enjoy and understand things of subtlety that I regret missing. Although there are anachronisms, the history foundation is quite entertaining and educating.

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Diana Gabaldon? Yes, I've been listening to theAudiobooks. Interesting how the Scots were on both sides during the Revolutionary War - largely determined by income.

Drown your sorrows in drink, by all means, but the real sorrows can swim

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Hi Brendan, "songs and poetry", little else.? I'd say songs and poetry would be at the top of my list. Your lyrical style of writing brings the content alive. "smacking winds", what a great sonic image, I really enjoyed reading this poem.

~~Tink

I started reading the Outlander series 20 years ago and the Starzz TV series sent me back to the books to reread these stories. I haven't read the 8th and last book but I want to revisit the first 7 before I begin the last installment. Just finished book 1 "outlander" and starting on book 2 Dragonfly in Amber. I'm afraid I'm getting a little ahead of the TV series, but I just couldn't resist. These are favorites of mine. The historical content had me as enthralled as the romance. And what I love about the TV series is now I know how certain Gaelic words and names are pronounced. Who knew Loughhire (I think that is how its spelled) is pronounced L'heer or like the Irish Siobhán - Shi vann which I did know.

~~ © ~~ Poems by Judi Van Gorder ~~

For permission to use this work you can write to Tinker1111@icloud.com

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You've likely seen it, but if not, Netflix - "Peaky Blinders."

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Actually, yes! I signed on to iTunes UK and buy gift cards from some shady but efficient crowd in Germany. All because the British shows are generally better than iTunes USA. I'm downloading Downton Abbey series 5 at the moment. I've seen this "Peaky Blinders" show on the UK webpage. On the strength of your recommendation I'll download Episode One!

 

All well with you, I hope?

 

Take care, Bren

Drown your sorrows in drink, by all means, but the real sorrows can swim

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I watched all episodes with great interest of movements within movements of the revolutionary time. The Birmingham events I was ignorant of. The true meaning of "Peaky Blinders" surprised me, but made perfect sense. You Irishers really are dotty. BTW, Netflix is the way to go. I pay $8/month for unlimited streaming, and the offerings are huge. One can get a limited education through selected videos. Amazing.

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