• Deirdre


And welcome may the message be I bring.

From whom and what the message? Sends he peace?

Conor sends peace and pardon. I myself
Your warrantor and convoy.

Favouring Gods !
What spell has wrought him to forgive my wrong?

We did him not a wrong. The wrong was his.
He kept me as a dainty for his use.
Locked in a prison-garden shamefully ;
Beast, who might well have been my grandfather I
Till Naisi gave me freedom, and I gave
Naisi the love was only mine to give.

What, daughter : thou shalt come as well as he,
And have him for thyself, be it wrong or right.
'Tis fixed and warranted ; and here's the hand
Will make it good. Naisi, the case stood thus :
My politic, learned step-son found his Maev
A partner somewhat over-arrogant,
And broke the marriage. Maev, imperial jade,
Has wed with Ailill, Tinne's son, and reigns
With him o'er the Connacians : in his halls
Of battlemented Croghan nursing hate
'Gainst now-detested Conor ; and from wilds
Of Irrus drawing Gamanradian braves
And fierce Damnonian sworders, sends them forth
'Gainst the Ultonian borders, host on host.
Pressing the Red Branch with perpetual war.
We've fought them, and we've chased them oft, but still
They issue from their heathy western hives
As thick as summer midges, and our swords
Are dulled with slaughter, and our arms are tired.
We've missed thee, Naisi, and thy brothers here ;
There's the plain truth. We missed and needed you.
And we, — Cuchullin, Conall, and myself, —
Avowed it in full council. And, said I,
" Sir, give me liberty to carry them
The royal message with assurance firm.

Spell, Freedom, Maev
Linen Hall Library, "Ferg041", Northern Ireland Literary Archive, accessed Fri, 12/03/2021 - 20:23, https://www.niliteraryarchive.com/content/ferg041