My Favorite Poetess

Constance, since I am giving clues this morning, I am going to share with you my favorite poetess…the great Gaelic
Singer/Poetess/Activist Caitlín Maude

She is the person that I named our first daughter after, and I was hoping to somehow confer upon her some of Caitlín’s incredible power and sensitivity.

I learned of Caitlín Maude in 1982, and I used to lay on our floor, in the dead of night, her album on the turntable on repeat…and listen to her speak…and sing…and speak…and I would cry and cry and cry.

Sometimes all night long…longing…for…well, at the time I did not know what.

Here is a video of her, and she is worth pursuing, tracking out.  I hope you enjoy her as much as I.

Love, Charissa

UPDATE:  Here is a translation, loose but close:

A Dhé le Caitlín Maude – Translation

Aistriúchán ar an Dán
(d’Adrian Radu i gCluz na Rómáinne)

A Dhé
le Caitlín Maude

Neither blood nor flesh
God
your conjured image
-the dreary mouthful of soil-
but I clasp it heart-wards
until it fuses into life.

The questioning is no comfort
(nor is the answer).

Why should I adore
the lifeless image
that will not explain away
and you
who felt my deepest pains
the way I do now?

And if it’s not the questioning
(nor the answer)
that’s the problem
(nor is the answer)
Oh no God.
I don’t understand.
I don’t know.
I’m convinced only – so far
Of that.
There or not
I am drawing towards you

and if you are
I call for one enchantment
to be saved
from those
who speak of you as
the cold man of the skies.

God,
my heresy is boundless
but would you not prefer this
to some intriguing lover of the world’s plenty
Who would fail to pay heed to you
from one end of the year to the next?

God,
The answer is far from the solution
There is no new mysterious revelation
You still have to travel the path of the thorns
No respite or homecoming at the bottom of the sea
Better the water on the forehead now
than after
My time has come to sow my blind pattern
on the gaping canvas.

I attack the contentious issues of the day
(body, heart and mind).
The temptation calls me
‘Don’t’.
What good is passing beauty?
What good?
But remember
that the answer is far from the solution
But the unsightly remains –
dead ashes of the night –
dirty dishes in the morning –
signs of my own death
and
constantly cleaning them
(dishes, heart and mind).
Forget for a while, God,
the dreary mouthful of soil.

(Worse is forgetting).
What can I do
but worship this bleak life?
I press towards me the curse.
I cannot say how long it will last.

But God,
I sneak, I comb, I tend to.
I hide in the fragrant cloth the ugly wounds.
Concealment is my specialty,
I smile
I stretch,
I kiss your lovely side.
There is hope in Spring.
I covet its pulse.

 

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