bardachd: (Default)
2013-01-12 12:40 am

Y Gododdin VI-XIV trans Sian Echard

[VI - XIV]

Gwyr a aeth ododin chwerthin ognaw.
chwerw en trin a llain en emdullyaw.
byrr vlyned en hed yd ynt endaw.
mab botgat gwnaeth gwynnyeith gwreith
e law.
ket elwynt e lanneu e benydyaw.
a hen a yeueing a hydyr a llaw.
dadyl diheu angheu y eu treidaw.Read more... )


Men went to Gododdin, laughter-inciting,
Bitter in battle, with blades set for war.
Brief the year they were at peace.
The son of Bodgad, by the deeds of his hand
did slaughter.
Though they went to churches to do penance,
The young, the old, the lowly, the strong,
True is the tale, death oer’took them.

Men went to Gododdin, with eager laughter,
Attacking in an army, cruel in battle,
They slew with swords without much sound
Rheithfyw, pillar of battle, took pleasure in giving.

Men went to Catraeth, swift was their host.
Fresh mead was their feast, their poison too.
Three hundred waging war, under command,
And after joy, there was silence.
Though they went to churches to do penance,
True is the tale, death oer’took them.

Men went to Catraeth, mead-nourished,
Sturdy and strong, it would be wrong should I not praise them.
Amid blood-red blades in dark-blue sockets,
The war-hounds fought fiercely, tight formation.
Of the war-band of Brennych, I would have thought it a burden,
to leave any in the shape of a man alive.
A friend I have lost; faithful I was.
Swift in the struggle, it grieves me to leave him.
The brave one desired no father-in-law’s dowry,
The son of Cian from Maen Gwyngwn.Read more... )
bardachd: (Default)
2013-01-12 12:21 am
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Them and [uz] - Tony Harrison

Them and [uz] - Tony Harrison

for Professors Richard Hoggart & Leon Cortez

ai, ai, ay, ay ... stutterer Demosthenes
gob full of pebbles outshouting seas-

4 words only of mi 'art aches and ... 'Mine's broken,
you barbarian, T.W.!' He was nicely spoken.
'Can't have our glorious heritage done to death!'

I played the Drunken Porter in Macbeth.

'Poetry's the speech of kings. You're one of those
Shakespeare gives the comic bits to: prose!
All poetry (even Cockney Keats?) you see
's been dubbed by [Ls] into RP,
Received Pronunciation, please believe (Ls)
your speech is in the hands of the Receivers.'

We say ‘(Ls) not [uz], T.W.!’ That shut my trap.
I doffed my flat a's (as in ‘Flat cap’)
my mouth all stuffed with glottals, great
lumps to hawk up and spit out ... E-nun-ci-ate!

- Tony Harrison
bardachd: (Default)
2013-01-11 10:29 pm
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Wild Rock - Ted Hughes

Tamed rock.
Millstone-grit - a soul-grinding sandstone.

Roof-of-the-world-ridge wind
And rain, and rain.

Heaven - the face of a quarry.
Oak-leaves of hammered copper, as in Cranach.

Grass growing on acid.

Wind. Cold. A permanent weight
To be braced under. And rain.

A people fixed
Staring at fleeces, blown like blown flames.

A people converting their stony ideas
To woollen weave, thick worsteds, dense fustians

Between their bones and the four trembling quarters.
bardachd: (Default)
2012-11-27 12:29 am

Tessa Ransford, "August 3rd"

August 3rd

The hill is tossing high, frail wisps of
rosy cloud to glide in steady gale
along a turquoise sky, around, above the
perpendicular and slightly askew columns,
above the triangular gap
between crown and crag.

The moon, full at midnight,
is now high and faded
almost a lazy eyelid:
day’s eye opening
or night’s eye closing.

Birds chase and ride the wind
reeling, wheeling,
aware that in a moment
ordinary flight of day will have to be resumed.

The hawk alone is steady,
keeps position despite the gale
to pinpoint a victim

and far below
grasses tinge in flower:
harebell, yarrow, lady’s yellow bedstraw
Among the rangy thistles and fatted doves.

-Tessa Ransford, "August 3rd"


(Arthur's seat)
bardachd: (Default)
2012-05-31 12:52 am

Lord Randall

"Oh where ha'e ye been, Lord Randall my son?
O where ha'e ye been, my handsome young man?"
"I ha'e been to the wild wood: mother make my bed soon,
For I'm weary wi' hunting, and fain wald lie down."

"Where gat ye your dinner, Lord Randall my son?"
Where gat ye your dinner, my handsome young man?"
"I dined wi' my true love; mother make my bed soon,
For I'm weary wi' hunting, and fain wald lie down."

"What gat ye to your dinner, Lord Randall my son?
What gat ye to your dinner, my handsome young man?"
"I gat eels boiled in broo: mother make my bed soon,
For I'm weary wi' hunting, and fain wald lie down."

"What became of your bloodhounds, Lord Randall my son?
What became of your bloodhounds, my handsome young man?"
"O they swelled and they died: mother make my bed soon,
For I'm weary wi' hunting, and fain wald lie down."

"O I fear ye are poisoned, Lord Randall my son!
O I fear ye are poisoned, my handsome young man?"
"O yes I am poisoned: mother make my bed soon,
For I'm sick at the heart, and I fain wald lie down."
bardachd: (Default)
2012-05-30 11:57 pm
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Nan Hardwicke Turns Into a Hare - Wendy Pratt

I will tell you how it was. I slipped
into the hare like a nude foot
into a glorious slipper. Pushing her bones
to one side to make room for my shape
so I could settle myself like a child within her.
In the dark I groped for her freedom, gently teasing
it apart across my fingers to web across my palm.
Here is where our separation ends:
I tensed her legs with my arms, pushed my rhythm
down the stepping-stones of spine. An odd feeling this,
to hold another's soul in the mouth like an egg;
the aching jaw around her delicate self. Her mind
was simple, full of open space and weather.
I warmed myself on her frantic pulse and felt the draw
of gorse and grass, the distant slate line
at the edge of the moor. The air span diamonds
our of sea fret to catch across my tawny coat
as I began to fold te earth beneath my feet
and fly across the heath, the heather.
bardachd: (Default)
2010-09-02 11:45 pm
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Lewis Spence: The Prows O' Reekie

O wad this braw hie-heapit toun
Sail aff like an enchanted ship,
Drift owre the wad's seas up and doun
And kiss wi' Venice lip to lip,
Or anchor into Naples Bay
A misty island far astray,
Or set her rock to Athen's wa',
Pillar to pillar, stane to stane
The cruikit spell o' her backbane,
Yon shadow-mile o' spire and vane
Wad ding them a'! Wad ding them a'!
Cadiz wad tine the admiralty
O' yonder emerod fair sea,
Gibraltar frown for frown exchange
Wi Nigel's Crags at elbuck-range,
The rose-red banks o' Lisbon make
Mair room in Tagus for her sake.

A hoose is but a puppet-box
To keep life's images frae knocks,
But mannikins scrieve oot their sauls
Upon its craw-steps and its walls:
Whaur hae they writ them mair sublime
Than on yon gable-ends o' time?





Reekie Edinburgh
hie-heapit high-built
owre over
cruikit crooked
ding beat, defeat
tine lose

elbuck elbow
scrieve write
bardachd: (Default)
2010-09-02 10:53 pm
Entry tags:

The Moor by R.S. Thomas

It was like a church to me.
I entered it on soft foot.
Breath held like a cap in the hand.
It was quiet.
What God was there made himself felt,
Not listened to, in clean colours
That brought a moistening of the eye,
In movement of the wind over grass.

There were no prayers said. But stillness
Of the heart's passions - that was praise
Enough; and the mind's cession
Of its kingdom. I walked on,
Simple and poor, while the air crumbled
And broke on me generously as bread.