Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Radnorshire bardic Poems, 8

Here is a another praise poem by Lewis Glyn Cothi to Philip ap Rhys and Gwenllian vz Owain Glyn Dwr of Cenarth, St Harmon. A nice image of the drunken bard staggering home to his own wife like a ship afloat on a sea of ale.

No 187 praise to Philip ap Rhys and Gwenllian vz Owain Glyndwr

The man with the four warhorses,
His course was love of office,
Philip son of Rhys, fine and generous,
His body is wise, generous and excellent.
One of the roots of the descent lines
Of Philip Fychan, from his share,
A stag who gives gifts without stop,
The heart of Gwerthrynion and her foot;
He gives full wine, the grandson of Ieuan Llwyd,
The foremost from the glen of Aeron.
It is known that in his majesty
The grandchild of Ieuan Moel shares mead.
Not one of his party was ever weak,
Not his ancestors nor his forefathers,
Not him, not his great grandmother,
Nor his father, nor mother, nor any of his tribe.
A son-in-law, so it is related,
In the sharing of truth, to old Gwyn;
Into his keeping, Gwenllian
Came up from Sycharth.

A laund web from Owain y Glyn
A daughter, too, of Cynfyn,
Molten gold from the body of Llowdden,
A golden thread from Gwen,
From Aron of Merionydd;
She is an Igraine, wise as an elected queen,
A generous daughter of Gruffydd Maelor,
A daughter of Rhodri Mawr,
This is the nobility of our island,
Who is second, Philip ap Rhys?

I dwelt in homely comfort
In his house for a short while.
Now it is high time that I,
As from the houses of Cheapside,
Turned my face toward home.
As is usual with the tribe of Cynfyn,
I am a ship afloat on a sea of ale;
Her head, amidst all the trees
Is a haven, a landfall.
I’m placed like a compass needle
In the box, although I am a grown man,
And her head, which is the diamond,
Is a sure sign of a northerly heading.

The hall of Philip is a rod,
The north of mead and wrought gold,
And my head turns to Gwynedd
And his white walled court.
Gwenllian shares from the court,
Upon her hand there’s gold for Lewis.
In giving wine from the pipe,
Philip will never fail.
Philip will govern every parish,
And so too will Gwenllian.
I sing a prayer for them,
Wine may be my reward.
I am their poet of the cywydd
Who praises Gwen and her husband.
For them let there be two lifetimes,
And after that, a third!

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