Saturday, March 24, 2007

Radnorshire Bardic Poems, 32

This poem begins with praise of St Afan, so was probably composed for a parish feast to celebrate the saint's feastday - 16th October. the Patron of the feast Dafydd ap Maredudd belongs to the major descent group in Buellt, the Moelwyniaid. Lewis Glyn Cothi again alludes to an ancient manuscript roll in his possession, to which he adds the names of his own patrons.

No. 139, Praise of Dafydd ap Maredudd and Siwan vz Rhys

I have fashioned verse for you Afan of Buellt,
I have poems as numerous as dewdrops;
The son of Caredig C’redigion,
You are Afan, so true writing confirms,
Son of Cunedda Wledig, a good, wise man,
Backbone of the wealthy lands,
Son of Edeyrn of the race of the generous
Padarn Peisrudd, like a sprout from Israel,
Kinsman in the faith to Holy Dewi,
Kinsman of dark-fair Teilo the anchorite,
A bishop in your triple cope,
You are a saint of their lineage.

In your parish there is a divine Welshman,
He has the parish to follow him;
Dafydd the son of Maredudd,
Part of the silkwork of Llysdinan,
Of the line of generous Ieuan ap Morgan,
A lion of the land of Buellt and her splendid material.
Except for Dafydd, there is no man
More like Ieuan ap Moelwyn.

Truth grows from the words of his tongue,
Truth is what the man seeks.
There is not a word that is not honoured,
Yet only truth goes to the chair.
His tongue is the ready bragget
That varnishes judgements.
There were seven who counted the stars,
Many suppose, in the vale of Tiber;
Their seven tales to the nation
Protected a child after breakfast.;
Dafydd is the eighth,
His tale will come to his son.

The God of the Hebrews, to my breast
Has given an old rolled manuscript.
Just as he placed in Moses’ tablet
Ten commandments at the end of the roll,
Two names - they are not of the same age -
Have been placed in my heavenly roll:
The name of Jesus who was and will be,
In the tablet, and the name of Dafydd.

Two speeches, by Mary, were on my lip
Yesterday, yet spoken by Taliesin:
They were a speech concerning the psalters of Mary,
And Siwan’s speech of welcome.
A daughter of Rhys, with five fingers from the bank,
Is youthful, talented Siwan.
The Enid of Gruffydd this white wave,
A fair spoken grandchild of Ricert;
An Euron of the race of Anarawd,
A portent in her five years of fortune.
To Buellt, there as she grows,
The sun of Cantre’ Selyf has turned,
To Llanafan, a heavenly spot,
To Llysdinam, above the river meadow.
The best court between the Wye and the church
For a talented lad, Llysdinan.
I aim for Rhos Dinan,
I go to the peak of Caer Ddinan.
I’m not to be had, I’ve no wish, ever,
To be more than two steps from the castle of Dinan the Giant.

Siwan is in fair Llysdinan,
Dafydd, humble his words.
Today Dafydd and Siwan,
Both call for a feat on a fair headland.
Little Siwan is good for profit,
Dafydd is good and young,
They are good to everyone, all are good,
They were so kind, God be kind to them.

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