• Deirdre


For love, for friendship, and for poesy ;
Nor rules there king in Erin, not himself,
Th' arch-king of Tara, Conary, glorious son
Of Ederscal, would venture, or have power,
To violate safe-conduct given by him.

Daughter, thou art the wife of my good friend ;
I therefore hear not any word ill-timed,
If such were spoken. But beseech you, come
The tide now serves us, and the wind sits fair.
Array ye quick, and let us seek the shore.

Bring forth my chess-board and its furniture,
My battle-tackle, and my hunting-gear,
For glad I am, and full resolved to go.

Call me nurse Levarcam, and bring my harp.
Sirs, I am ready. Yes, I knew thy cry,
Fergus, for, I remember, once you rode
To hunt with Nessa close beneath my bower :
And I could tell you still what robes ye wore.
And what the several names ye called your hounds.
'Twas then I heard it, and I know it still,
But feigned I knew it not ; and to no end.
Yes, from that turret on my garden wall
I oft have viewed the Brethren of the Branch,
And learned their cries of combat and of chase ;
And there I oft saw him my eyes preferred,
As my heart prizes still above all men.
And where he goes, I go along with him.

See here our galley. Send us forth a plank.
Hold by my hand. Deirdre, I swear to you,
My heart is lighter now you are on board ;
For a good ending shall our journey have,
And I am sure thou 'It thank me for it yet.
Cast off ! Up sail ! She feels the wind. We fly.

Linen Hall Library, "Ferg045", Northern Ireland Literary Archive, accessed Fri, 12/03/2021 - 20:23, https://www.niliteraryarchive.com/content/ferg045