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Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Cétemain, Cain Cucht ~ May-time, Beautifully Formed

The following is a poem said to have been spoken by Finn Mac Cumal

Cétemain, cain cucht

1 Cétemain, cain cucht,
rée rosaír rann;
canait luin laíd láin
día laí (grían) gaí n-gann.
2 Gairid cuí chrúaid den;
is fo-chen sam saír:
suidid síne serb
i m-bi cerb caill chraíb.
3 Cerbaid sam súaill sruth;
saigid graig lúath linn;
lethaid fota fraích;
for-beir folt fann finn.
4 Fúapair sceith scell scíach;
im-reith réid rían rith;
cuirithir sál súan;
tuigithir bláth bith.
5 Berait beich (bec nert)
bert bonn bochtai bláith;
berid slabrai slíab:
feraid saidbir sáith.
6 Seinnid caille céol;
con-greinn séol síd slán;
síatair denn do dinn,
dé do loch linn lán.
7 Labraid tragna trén;
canaid ess n-ard n-úag
fáilti do (thoinn) té;
táinic lúachra lúad.
8 Lengait fainnle fúas;
(im-said) crúas cíuil (cróich)
for-beir mes máeth méth;
(innisid loth loíth).
9 (Leig lath fath feig);
(fert) ar-cain cuí chrúaid;
cuirithir brecc bedc;
is balc (gedc) láith lúaith.
10 Losaid foirbríg fer;
óg a m-búaid m-breg m-bras;
caín cach caille clár;
caín cach mag már mas.
11 Melldach rée rann;
(ro fáith) gaíth garb gam;
gel ros; toirthech (tonn);
(oll) síd; subach sam.
12 Suidigthir íall én
(i n-íath) i m-bí ben;
búirithir gort glas
i m-bí bras glas gel.
13 Greit mer, imrim ech;
im-sernar sreth slúaig;
rosáer rath geilestar:
ór eilestar úaid.
14 Ecal aird fer fann;
fedil fochain ucht;
uiss ima-cain
‘Cetemain, cain cucht’.

- Kuno Meyer, Revue celtique 5, 1881


May-time, Beautifully Formed

1 May-time, beautifully formed, 
time moves forward in its division; 
the blackbird clearly sings his songs 
praise of day's (sun's) scarce spear.
2 The rough-colored cuckoo calls; 
to welcome summer's arrival: 
settled is a bitter age 
in entering a silver forest of trees.
3 Summer cuts short a trifling river; 
seeking out swift water horses; 
extending long hair; 
growing hair soft and shining.
4 Dashing attacks on a warrior's shield; 
the sea's path rotates easily; 
causing the sea's magical sleep; 
flowers covering the world.
5 Bees carry (little strength) 
a burden of wild angelica, gathering flowers; 
cattle go up the mountains: 
supplying a sufficiency of wealth.
6 The harp plays music; 
 music gathering in complete peace; 
color settled on every height, 
haze from the lake full of waters.
7 The corncrake speaks strongly; 
a young, high waterfall sings 
welcome to the warm (wave); 
discussion of rushes has come.
8 The swallow freely leaps; 
(circling) a gentle song (the hill) 
crops growing soft and rich; 
(the stammering marsh announces).
9 (The warrior stone's covering is luminous); 
a (grave-mound) cuckoo sings sternly; 
leaps away the speckled [fish]; 
powerful are the (may-fly) swift warriors.
10 Men's vigor grows; 
youths of victory, fitness, boastfulness; 
beautiful every forest plain; 
beautiful every great plain's foundation.
11 Delightful quarter of time; 
(gone are) rough winter winds; 
bright woods; fruitful (wave); 
(great) peace; cheerful summer.
12 A flock of birds settles 
(in a territory) in abundance; 
noise in green fields
in loud living bright green.
13 A wild hero, riding horses; 
the ordered host is arrayed around; 
crafted a fort's cattle pond: 
the water-source gold underneath.
14 A timid weak person's attention; 
enduring call in the air; 
larks singing around 
‘Maytime, beautifully formed’.

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