As in many cultures, the Irish have a mythical place - their equivalent of Shangri-la - where no one ever grows old. It is called Tir na nOg (the Land of the Young). In this song the great bard Usheen is seduced by a sorceress in his dreams. She is the daughter of the king of Tir na nOg and, at her father’s behest, is trying to get Usheen to go to that magical kingdom by making him fall in love with her before they met. The words in Gaelic at the beginning translate as “Usheen is dreaming, is dreaming, is dreaming in the land, in the land between Yes and No”.
The Seduction of Oisin
Tá Oisín ag bringloid, ag bringloid, ag bringloid
San tír, ins an tír idir tá agus níl
Oisín is dreaming in the twilight of meeting
Golden haired Niamh where the land loves the sea
Oh Oisín is sleeping but Niamh is a-weaving
With de Danaan magic his dreams in a spell
Full of visions of lust that possess and enfold him
Calling him to her in his blood like a bell
He says, "Take me and taste me, I’m cupped in your hollows
On the rivers of love you call and I follow
While time's hanging helpless and our bones turn to air
The sky lies beneath us and we are everywhere"
She says, " Oisín, my Oisín, we flow in the same dream
We are borne on the same stream of silvery moonbeams
We are thoughts of the same mind
We are flames of the same fire
And our lives are entwined by my witches desire"
© Des Wade 2014