Monday, February 12, 2007

Radnorshire Bardic Poems, 28

Here’s an ode by Lewis Glyn Cothi praising the family of Phelpod ap Rhys of Brilley.

No 145, Praise to the four sons of Phelpod ap Rhys

Four entangled oak roots to Cynon,
Who maintainer four courts,
Four lambs of St Peter,
Four earls of Phelpod ap Rhys.
Four who speak as one, so that some would not
Dare to venture a finger’s step from them,
Are they not four fair girdles
From the stout house of Phelpod ap Rhys?
Four corners for the land like the four fingers of a hand,
Four lions from the same court,
Are they not fair like four guiding heads,
The golden tapers of Phelpod ap Rhys.
The grandsons of Rhys share one design
With Phelpod ap Rhys of the land of the Isle of Honey,
To welcome the poets and storytellers,
To desire for knotted gold and song.
In the summer I have Dafydd’s gold freely,
The gold of Rhys I’ve had upon my clothes,
The gold of Sion, in gifts, given eagerly,
The white-hot gold of Tomas of the same temper.
The mead of Dafydd was had, like the Teme,
The mead of Rhys, to my waist, like the water of Egwad,
The mead of Sion, an ocean to my eyes,
The blue mead of Tomas, such as his father made.
What better four under the moon?
Best the four who share a single love.
Four angels of God set amongst us,
Four sons of Phelpod, supreme lions,
Four gospel books, their feast is not denied,
Four sons of Phelpod of one exaltation,
Four waters of Paradise of one content,
Four lances of Phelpod between four lands,
Four corners of the earth, of one appearance,
Four stags of Phelpod between four battles,
Four gifts of mankind, they fight as one,
Four notes of Phelpod, from his seed and stock,
Four prime feats, a lamp for all the country,
Four arms of Phelpod against four treasons,
Four main winds, let there be four experiences,
Four sons of Phelpod in reconciliation,
For Maels of Elfael, from brow to pate,
For Mays of Brilley where all are treated,
Four beryl stones who would greet me,
From four beryl stones let there be seed and progeny.
Let there be seed like that from a young salmon,
From four knowledgeable lions,
From four marvellous brothers,
From four saplings of the oak of Rhys

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