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Agoriad

 

Yn gynnes yn y graig, ffynnon
sy'n tincial gleiniau crisial
yn danlli gri yn sisial
ffynnon yw hon-llawn awelon
ger y moroedd garw-hen fumuron

Ar draethell daeth mintai
fe'u golchwyd i'r bae
"Ein gwefusau'n sychedig"
-a hi yn hwyrhau.

O'i weddi daeth atom
-rhoi ffiol ar ein min."
"lach y byddwch yn y bore
-rhodd Duw yw'r dwr - blas gwin."

"Beth fynni di gennym
Am groeso drem y mor?"
"Yn anterth pob storom-
gallu galw'r teithwr i'm dôr".

Mewn glesni, tesni'n lasgu,
cwmysg â'r glas sy'n llathru,
Croeso rhwng dwy ynys- hen gynghanedd
ger y moroedd garw- llaw tangnefedd.

 

The final stanza of MENNA ELFYN'S poem AGORIAD embodies for me the spirit of peace and time encapsulated in this work. "Blue calm", interspersed with a "sunburst of radiance", "green shining light" - what a kaleidoscope of colour is conjured up in one's mind!

The poetry, together with JOHN METCALF'S memorable composition, performed in St. David's Cathedral October 2000 as part of the Celtic Connections celebration, inspired me to paint my interpretation of this work.

A tiny chapel perched in a cleft in the cliffs at the most southerly point of Pembrokeshire - stillness, light, serenity are all words one calls to mind. Sailing close to the base of these cliffs in our kitch Afurn, one has to search for the little chapel, seemingly at one with the rocks of the cliff face - when suddenly a "sunburst of radiance" alights on the simple roof and the whole story of St. Govan transcends the day to day culture of our modern world.

What a delight it was to listen to AGORIAD in St. David's ancient cathedral, also hidden from sight by the confines of the land, glimpsed only as one passes between the arches of the bell tower and the sun shines upon the roof of this amazing building. A cathedral in a valley, a chapel on a cliff face - the thread of history joins them both!

For non Irish speakers, the words of MICHAEL COADY'S translation, OSCAILT, hold a a visual beauty intrinsic in their form and together with a Welsh lyricist and composer combine to produce a true Celtic Connection.

Monica Groves

Oscailt

 

Tobar sa charraig neadaithe,
le ceol ur-choirnini
criostal ag siosarnach:
"Tá'n tobar seo beo go beal-
anail mara seansceal."

Sa chuas, scata oilthrigh,
iad scaipthe ar strae,
"Ar mbeilini calctha"
ag deireadh lae

tháinig, 's é ag urnai,
corn uisce ina lámh.
"Blais mar bheadh fíon ann,
ar maidin beidh sibh slán."

"Cé'n aisce ab áil leat
ón ár n-oileán seo thiar?"
"Ceol cunta le linn anfa
do lucht seolta na sl´i"

Glinni´uint ghlasghorm, scal ghréine,
léas 'gus nascadh físe is féile - comhfhuaim
sinsearach thar garbhghlór toinne,
tearmann chroi céad fáilte is soineann.

Translation -
Michael Coady

Opening

 

In the warmth of the rock, a well
tinkling crystal, beads
newly made - whispering-
"This well is full of breeze
the rough seas - old murmurings"

In the cove, some pilgrims
were washed into the bay.
"Our lips were parched"
it was the end of the day.

From his payer he came
with a cup in his hand.
"You'll be better in the morning
this water is wine, you understand"

"What gift in return
would you seek from our isle?"
"In the midst of the tempest
a bell to warn others who pass by."

In the blue calm, sunburst of radiance
- the green light that shines with charity
the welcome of two isles - old harmony
by th rough seas - a hand of tranquility.