Friday, October 8, 2010

Preab San Ol

18th century Irish song by Riocard Bairéid, originally in Gaelic; English version by Donald O' Sullivan

Preab san ól
(another round)

1.Why spend your leisure bereft of pleasure?
Amassing treasure you'll scrape and save.
Why look so canny at ev'ry penny?
You'll take no money within the grave.
Landlords and gentry with all their plenty
Must still go empty where'er they're bound,
So to my thinking, we'd best be drinking,
Our glasses clinking on- another round.

2. The huxter greedy will grind the needy
Their straits unheeding, shouts: 'money down!'
His special vice is his fancy prices,
For a florin's value he'll charge a pound.
With hump for trammel, the scripture's camel
Missed the needle's eye and so came to ground
Why pine for riches when still you've stitches
To hold your britches up- another round.

3.The shipmen trading in Spain and Aden
Return well laden with oil and corn.
And from Gibraltar their course they'll alter
And steer for Malta and the Golden Horn.
With easy motion they sail life's ocean
With ne'er a notion they'll soon run aground,
So lads and lasses make all your passes
And fill your glasses for.. another round.

4. King Solomon's glory, so famed in story,
Was far outshone by the lily's guise.
But cold winds harden both field and garden;
Pleading for pardon, the lily dies.
Life's but a bubble of toil and trouble,
A feathered arrow, once shot ne'er found.
It's nought but miming, so ends my rhyming
And still we've time in for- another round.

1 comment:

  1. Hello. I'm doing a research on Preab san Ól and I can see you've mentioned Donald O'Sullivan as the translator. Do you have any information on who was Donald O'Sullivan and/or when he translated the poem (19th or 20th century?). Thanks a lot in advance!