Amhrán na bPrátaí Dubha, by Máire Ní Dhroma

Amhrán na bPrátaí Dubha

Na prátaí dubha do dhein ár gcomharsana a scaipeadh orainn,
Do chuir sa phoorhouse iad is anonn thar farraige;
I Reilig an tSléibhe tá na céadta acu treascartha
Is uaisle na bFflaitheas go ngabhaid a bpáirt,

A Dhia na Glóire fóir agus freagair sinn,
Scaoil ár nglasa agus réidh ár gcás,
Is an bheatha arís ó Do Chroí go gcasair orainn,
Is an poorhouse go leagair anuas ar lár.

Más mar gheall ar ár bpeacaí claona tháinig an chéim seo eadrainn,
Oscail ár gcroí is díbir an ghangaid as;
Lig braon beag de Do fhíorspiorad arís chun ár gcneasaithe,
Is uaisle na bhFlaitheas go ré ár gcás.

Níl aon chuimhne againne oíche nó maidin Ort
Ach ar ainnise an tsaoil ag déanamh marbhna,
Is, a Íosa Críost, go dtógair dínn an scamall so
Go mbeimis dod amharcadh gach am den lá.

Tá na bochta so Éireann ag plé leis an ainnise,
Buairt is anacair is pianta báis,
Leanaí bochta ag béiceadh is ag screadadh gach maidin,
Ocras fada orthu is gan dada le fáil.

Ní hé Dia a cheap riamh an obair seo,
Daoine bochta a chur le fuacht is le fán,
Iad a chur sa phoorhouse go dubhach is glas orthu,
Lánúineacha pósta is iad scartha go bás.

Na leanaí óga thógfaidís suas le macnas
Sciobtaí uathu iad gan trua gan taise dhóibh:
Ar bheagán lóin ach súp na hainnise
Gan máthair le freagairt díbh dá bhfaighidís bás.

A Rí na Trua is a Uain Ghil Bheannaithe,
Féach an ainnise atá dár gcrá
Is ná lig ar strae Uait Féin an t-anam bocht
Is a fheabhas a cheannaigh Tú é féin sa Pháis.

Nach trua móruaisle go bhfuil mórán coda acu
Ag íoc as an obair seo le Rí na nGrás;
Fearaibh bochta an tsaoil seo ná fuair riamh aon saibhreas
Ach ag síorobair dóibh ó aois go bás.

Bíonn siad ar siúl ar maidin, ar an dóigh sin dóibh,
Is as sin go tráthnóna ag cur cuiríní allais díobh,
Níl aon mhaith ina ndícheall mura mbíd cuíosach, seasmhach,
Ach téigi abhaile is beidh bhúr dtithe ar lár.

© Le Máire Ní Dhroma

The Black Potatoes,Trans. by Michael Coady

 

The black potatoes scattered our neighbours,
Sent them to the poorhouse and across the sea,
They are stretched in hundreds in mountain graveyards,
May the heavenly host take up their plea.

O God of glory save us and answer us
Loose our bonds and fight our case,
Give us life from out your heart again
And level the poorhouse in every place.

If it was sin brought this penance down on us,
Open our hearts and banish gall,
Anoint our wounds with your spirit’s healing
And heavenly host take up our cause.

Too little we hold you in our memory
With the dark of life and its keen of woe,
O Jesus Christ lift this cloud from us
May we see your face as we come and go.

The poor of Ireland truck with misery
With the pain of death and the weight of grief,
Little children scream each morning
From hunger pains, with no bite to eat.

It can’t be God that brought this down on us,
The starving scattered under freezing skies,
Or the poorhouse door bolted cold and dark on them,
With wives and husbands set apart to die.

Snatched from them without compassion
Were the children raised by them in pride,
Famished waifs tasting soup of misery
And no mother there to ease their cries.

Alas there are those endowed with wealth enough,
Who do not serve the king of life,
They abuse the poor who never had anything
But constant labour for all their time.

From early morning they toil unceasingly
Each sweated day until dark comes on,
Little gain their best can earn for them
But cold dismissal and tumbled homes.

Oh King of pity and blessed lamb of God
Free us from this tormenting pall
Don’t let a single soul be lost to you,
You whose passion redeemed us all.

The king of glory will surely answer them
And the Virgin Mary unbolt the door,
The twelve apostles will make good friends of them
To share in plenty for evermore.

That day will show the true heart of charity
With the King of Heaven handing out relief,
The light of lights and the sight of Paradise,
Will repay the poor for this earthly grief.