Poems or Stories about traditional fiddle and/or pipes

Poems or Stories about traditional fiddle and/or pipes

Hi,

I’m looking to find poems or short stories which relate to Irish fiddle playing or piping. Literature relating to Donegal music is particularly welcomed.

So if you know of anything of interest I’d be grateful of the information.

Cheers

Posted .

Re: Poems or Stories about traditional fiddle and/or pipes

There was a young man who played fiddle
Who’s technique was always a riddle
He bowed so fast
He was quite unsurpassed
As the best who could play irish diddle

(I made that up)

Posted .

Re: Poems or Stories about traditional fiddle and/or pipes

Séamus Heaney - The Given Note. - springs immediately to mind.

Re: Poems or Stories about traditional fiddle and/or pipes

The Given Note

On the most westerly Blasket
In a dry-stone hut
He got this air out of the night.
Strange noises were heard
By others who followed, bits of a tune
Coming in on loud weather
Though nothing like melody.
He blamed their fingers and ear
As unpractised, their fiddling easy
For he had gone alone into the island
And brought back the whole thing.
The house throbbed like his full violin.
So wether he calls it spirit music
Or not, I don’t care. He took it
Out of wind off mid-Atlantic.
Still he maintains, from nowhere.
It comes off the bow gravely,
Rephrases itself into the air.

Séamus Heaney

Re: Poems or Stories about traditional fiddle and/or pipes

I prefer DJF’s poem…..

Posted .

Re: Poems or Stories about traditional fiddle and/or pipes

Yeah, Dan’s is definitely better!
Here’s my offering:

There was a young Uilleann piper
Who was damn good, but awfully hyper.
He played "Wizard’s Walk"
At a session in York —
Next day he was shot by a sniper.

Re: Poems or Stories about traditional fiddle and/or pipes

Joseph! Fantastic poem I must say 🙂

So big is the brown hair of Joe
He really has quite an afro
He must see a barber
In Manhattan Harbour
Or to outer Space it will grow.

Posted .

Re: Poems or Stories about traditional fiddle and/or pipes

I know a young fiddler called Dan
Who plays as fast as he can.
He played "Wizard’s Walk"
At a session in York —
Next day he was given a ban

😉
D

(ps back to your studies, DJF!)

Re: Poems or Stories about traditional fiddle and/or pipes

Much as I appreciate all these amusing little Limericks, are there any poems or stories by published writers besides Seamus Heaney that relate to the subjects?

Posted .

Re: Poems or Stories about traditional fiddle and/or pipes

Strange that nobody else should be willing to help you out. I wonder why that might be…

Re: Poems or Stories about traditional fiddle and/or pipes

THE HOST OF THE AIR
by: William Butler Yeats (1865-1939)
O’DRISCOLL drove with a song
The wild duck and the drake
From the tall and the tufted reeds
Of the drear Hart Lake.

And he saw how the reeds grew dark
At the coming of night-tide,
And dreamed of the long dim hair
Of Bridget his bride.

He heard while he sang and dreamed
A piper piping away,
And never was piping so sad,
And never was piping so gay.

And he saw young men and young girls
Who danced on a level place,
And Bridget his bride among them,
With a sad and a gay face.

The dancers crowded about him
And many a sweet thing said,
And a young man brought him red wine
And a young girl white bread.

But Bridget drew him by the sleeve
Away from the merry bands,
To old men playing at cards
With a twinkling of ancient hands.

The bread and the wine had a doom,
For these were the host of the air;
He sat and played in a dream
Of her long dim hair.

He played with the merry old men
And thought not of evil chance,
Until one bore Bridget his bride
Away from the merry dance.

He bore her away in his arms,
The handsomest young man there,
And his neck and his breast and his arms
Were drowned in her long dim hair.

O’Driscoll scattered the cards
And out of his dream awoke:
Old men and young men and young girls
Were gone like a drifting smoke;

But he heard high up in the air
A piper piping away,
And never was piping so sad,
And never was piping so gay.

Re: Poems or Stories about traditional fiddle and/or pipes

This is from Moya Cannon’s ‘Between the Jigs and Reels’.


‘The rhythm of Cooley’s accordion which could open the heart of a stone.

John Doherty’s dark reels and the tunes that the sea taught him.

The high parts of the road and the underworlds which only music and love can brave.

To bring us back to our senses and on beyond.’

Posted by .

Re: Poems or Stories about traditional fiddle and/or pipes

more from Yeats:

The Fiddler of Dooney

By William Butler Yeats


WHEN I play on my fiddle in Dooney,

Folk dance like a wave of the sea;

My cousin is priest in Kilvarnet,

My brother in Moharabuiee.



I passed my brother and cousin:

They read in their books of prayer;

I read in my book of songs

I bought at the Sligo fair.



When we come at the end of time,

To Peter sitting in state,

He will smile on the three old spirits,

But call me first through the gate;



For the good are always the merry,

Save by an evil chance,

And the merry love the fiddle

And the merry love to dance:



And when the folk there spy me,

They will all come up to me,

With ‘Here is the fiddler of Dooney!’

And dance like a wave of the sea.

Re: Poems or Stories about traditional fiddle and/or pipes

That Moya Cannon poem could be just the one I’m looking for. Any idea where I can get the full poem?

Posted .

Re: Poems or Stories about traditional fiddle and/or pipes

You can hear Moya read it on the album ‘Between the Jigs and the Reels’, available from the Conamara Environmental Education and Cultural Centre - http://www.ceecc.org/.

On the main page scroll right down until you see a box on the right called ‘What’s new on our Site?`. Scroll down further and click on ‘17-Nov-2008 Listen to two more Event CDs.’

Posted by .

Re: Poems or Stories about traditional fiddle and/or pipes

I’ve heard this recited as a poem, but it healps if you sing the chorus.

O Mrs Gilhooley she gave a grand party one night and invited us all to attend
So we gathered a gang and went down to the house, a few pleasant hours for to spend
There was Mickey and Tommy and Jack and meself, a more impudent crowd hard to find
But the thing most important we nearly forgot, we near left the piper behind.

We invited him down to a party and he brought his bagpipes just by chance
We asked him to sing and he said - A No..but I’ll give us a bit of a dance
So he picked up his pipes and he started to play while someone was fooling about
And they cut a big hole in the bag of his pipes and this is the tune that came out
NAhhhhhh - (Lilt Reel)

When the piper found out that his bag had been cut he gave a great lep on the floor
His kit-oge got working in quite hammer style and he landed them under the jaw
O Mrs Gilhooley she fainted, but they all made a rush for the door
And the piper had nine of them taking the count, and he swore he’d kill twenty more

We……………..Chorus…..

So if ever you go to a party, always keep this in your mind
Don’t fool about with the auld piper at all, you’ll find he’s a gentleman kind
For if trouble should start, keep out of his way, for he carries an awful pull-toge
You won’t hear it coming but O when it lands, you’ll find its an Irish kit-oge

We………………Chorus

Re: Poems or Stories about traditional fiddle and/or pipes

Thanks everyone, especially Floss the Tethers for finding that hidden gem.

Posted .

Re: Poems or Stories about traditional fiddle and/or pipes

The hairs of Dan Foster are ginger
And my eyes they really do injure.
Dan, I never lie:
You need a hair dye.
Otherwise, I’m hiring a ninja.

Re: Poems or Stories about traditional fiddle and/or pipes

When the bagpipes are playing
Highlanders can go on fighting
Ten minutes after they are clinically dead,
Or so I’ve heard.
I don’t think
I could, because
I don’t like bagpipes.

E.J.Thribb (17)

Re: Poems or Stories about traditional fiddle and/or pipes

That is brilliant. What would it sound like translated into Scots Gaelic, I wonder?