Newsletter #42: May 2018

Song of the month: Bábóg na Bealtaine


“Song of the month” aims to encourage the readers of this newsletter to learn songs in Irish and sing them themselves. The lyrics of each song are provided, along with a translation into English and a link to a video of the song on YouTube.


This month’s song is “Babóg na Bealtaine”, from the late singer Eithne Ní Uallacháin and her band Lá Lugh. This particular recording was made in Ionad Cois Locha in the Donegal Gaeltacht of Gaoth Dobhair in 1997, two years before Eithne’s death. The song was collected by Énrí Ó Muirgheasa (1874–1945) from Owen Byrne of Farney, County Monaghan over a hundred years ago and published in Ó Muirgheasa’s collection, Céad de Cheoltaibh Uladh (1915).





CurfáChorus
Samhradh buí na nóiníní gléigeal’, Golden summer of the pure white daisies,
Thugamar féin an samhradh linn. We brought the summer with us.
Ó bhaile go baile is chun ár mbaile ’na dhiaidh sin, From town to town and to our home after that,
Thugamar féin an samhradh linn. We brought the summer with us.

Bábóg na Bealtaine, maighdean an tsamhraidh, The Bealtaine doll, summer maiden,
Suas gach cnoc is síos gach gleann. Up each hill and down each glen.
Cailíní maiseacha, bángheal', gléigeal’, Comely girls, dressed in pure white,
Is thugamar féin an samhradh linn. And we brought the summer with us.

Curfá Chorus

Tá an fhuiseog ag seinm is ag luascadh sna spéartha, The lark is making music and swaying in the skies,
Beacha is cuileoga is bláth ar na crainn. Bees and flies and flower on the trees.
Tá an chuach is na héanlaith ag seinm le pléisiúr,The cuckoo and the birds are singing with pleasure,
Is thugamar féin an samhradh linn. And we brought the summer with us.

Curfá Chorus

Tá nead ag an ghiorria ar imeall na haille,The hare has a nest on the edge of the cliff,
Is nead ag an chorr réisc ar ghéaga an chrainn.And the heron has a nest on the branches of the tree.
Tá mil ar na cuiseoga is na coilm ag béiceadh,There is honey on the stalks and the doves are roaring,
Is thugamar féin an samhradh linn. And we brought the summer with us.

Curfá Chorus

Tá an ghrian ag loinnreadh is ag lasadh na dtabhartas, The sun is shining and lighting the gifts,
Tá an fharraige mar scáthán ag gáirí don ghlinn’. The sea is like a mirror smiling for the winder.
Tá na madaí ag peithreadh is an t-eallach ag géimnigh,The dogs are barking and the cattle are mooing,
Is thugamar féin an samhradh linn. And we brought the summer with us.

Curfá x 2 Chorus x 2