Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

Stained Glass Shamrock

You’ll find no green beer here
Or stories with a jeer here
about shamrock socks
or leprechaun jocks;
The Irish won’t get a smear here.

I pass along this fantastic
idea, not sarcastic,
not as a joke
about wee folk,
But with thought enthusiastic:

Storytelling is an art
that makes the Irish a part
of words unfurled
joining the world
To one growing literary chart.

Copyright 2015 Brenda Davis Harsham

Note: The foregoing are my limericks three, to frame my respect for my Irish heritage. The shamrock is a work in progress by my daughter and I. To celebrate St. Patrick’s Day, here are few treasures by Irish authors:

While mantling on the maiden’s cheek
Young roses kindled into thought.

 ―  Thomas Moore

The Lake Isle Of Innisfree

I will arise and go now, and go to Innisfree,
And a small cabin build there, of clay and wattles made:
Nine bean-rows will I have there, a hive for the honeybee,
And live alone in the bee-loud glade.
And I shall have some peace there, for peace comes dropping slow,
Dropping from the veils of the morning to where the cricket sings;
There midnight’s all a glimmer, and noon a purple glow,
And evening full of the linnet’s wings.
I will arise and go now, for always night and day
I hear lake water lapping with low sounds by the shore;
While I stand on the roadway, or on the pavements grey,
I hear it in the deep heart’s core. 

― William Butler Yeats

My body was like a harp and her words and gestures
were like fingers running upon the wires.

 ― James Joyce, Araby

Of the things which nourish the imagination,
humour is one of the most needful,
and it is dangerous to limit or destroy it.

 ―  John Millington Synge

I think of the bog as a feminine goddess-ridden ground,
rather like the territory of Ireland itself.

 ―  Seamus Heaney

Irish Blessing

Midsummer Stew


“Come away, O human child!
To the waters and the wild,
With a faery, hand in hand,
For the world’s more full of weeping than you can understand.” – W.B. Yeats

Conla picked early sage in her garden. Her family traditionally made a lamb stew for their midsummer feast. Her mother, Bronwyn, was inside their house braising the lamb with spring onions and chives. Conla heard her neighbor’s voice, and turned to see him walking under their archway with its pink roses and purple clematis.

“I can’t find a thing! My jackets are missing their buttons. My trousers all have holes. My wallet and keys are missing again! Are you doing this to me?!” Conla’s neighbor in the white cottage next door was Seamus O’Flanagan. Their two houses were the only ones for miles in that wild part of County Wicklow. The American had retired and come to the old country to write and paint, in the county of his ancestors. His wispy white hair was standing up in the wind, and his cheeks were red with anger.

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