March 17, 2006

Erin go bragh

To Read:

How the Irish Saved Civilization, part of Thomas Cahill's wonderful "Hinges of History" series

Celtic Fairy Tales by Joseph Jacobs

Treasury of Irish Myth, Legend & Folklore by William Butler Yeats

Brendan the Navigator: A History Mystery About the Discovery of America by Jean Fritz; about the legendary Irish monk's voyage in his little leather coracle

Patrick: Patron Saint of Ireland, picture book biography written and illustrated by Tomie De Paola

Fair, Brown & Trembling: An Irish Cinderella Story, written and illustrated by Jude Daly

Shamrocks, Harps, and Shillelaghs: The Story of the St. Patrick's Day Symbols by Edna Barth
my children love Barth's series about the holidays, with their simple pen and ink illustrations (photocopies make very nice coloring pages)

To Taste:

Irish recipes from 101 Cookbooks (which means yes, they'll work and be tasty):

Irish Mum's Brown Bread

Kiss Me I'm Irish Coffee

To Listen to:

James Galway & The Chieftains in Ireland

If I Should Fall from Grace With God by the Pogues

To Watch:

The Quiet Man with John Wayne and Maureen O'Hara; director John Ford (born Sean Aloysius O'Fearna) at his sentimental best.

The Informer with Victor McLaglen. More John Ford, this time during the Irish Rebellion. Don't just take my word on this one; it won Oscars for Ford, McLaglen, also for best score and best screenplay.

To Enjoy:

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.

UPDATE: For more St. Patrick's Day treats, including more Yeats, head over to The Bonny Glen, with its Yeats-inspired tagline. Thanks, Melissa!

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