On National Poetry Day, here are four brilliant Irish poems that reflect upon the sea and Ireland’s coast.
We hope you enjoy the poems below!
Lovers on Aran by Seamus Heaney
The timeless waves, bright, sifting, broken glass,
Came dazzling around, into the rocks,
Came glinting, sifting from the Americas
To posess Aran. Or did Aran rush
to throw wide arms of rock around a tide
That yielded with an ebb, with a soft crash?
Did sea define the land or land the sea?
Each drew new meaning from the waves’ collision.
Sea broke on land to full identity.
The Rose of Silence By Ella Young
In a green stillness hidden from sun and moon
Under the sea,
A blossom swings by the High-Queen’s doon.
On a silver tree;
And every poet has dreamed since time begun
Of that hidden place,
But only those who have said farewell to the sun
May come to the doon by the silver tree
Or find in hollow or height,
Under the still green tideless sea
The Rose of Silence and Night.
Poet unknown, found in Early Irish manuscript dating from 850 AD
‘Bitter is the wind tonight
It tosses the ocean’s white hair
Tonight I fear not the fierce warriors of Norway
Coursing on the Irish sea‘
All Day I Hear The Noise Of Waters by James Joyce
All day I hear the noise of waters
Sad as the sea-bird is when, going
He hears the winds cry to the water’s
The grey winds, the cold winds are blowing
Where I go.
I hear the noise of many waters
All day, all night, I hear them flowing
To and fro.