Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Where Splendour Falls (experimentation in film)

I had it in my mind to put together a few music videos to go along with songs from the album "Where Splendour Falls." "Ochón A Mhuire Bhúidh" is the second instalment in that notion (here is the first for those who didn't see it).


The lyrics are a specific style of medieval Irish verse that takes the form of a prayer or plea to the Virgin Mary. The melody is a caoineadh or lament. The lyrics of this song were written some time in the late 1500's by Domhnall MacCarthaigh Mór-last chieftain of the McCarthy Clan. The poem is a description of the beauty and traits of his wife and how she has him destroyed. Domhnall entreaties the Virgin Mary to intercede and save him. Here is a link to an earlier blogpost about Domhnall. The lyrics are in this post here.

The locations on film include: Kanturk Castle* (built by the MacDonogh Maccarthy Clan), Castle Lough (where Domhnall resided), An Dhá Chíoch/The Paps Mountain (the breasts of the Goddess Danú), and lastly, the Spéirbhean monument in Killarney town. The Spéirbhean is a poetic figure and device, an imagining of Ireland in the form of a woman. Used in a time when patriotic verse was outlawed, poets described a vision of a troubled woman instead. It translates as sky woman.

*Thanks to the bould Tim Browne for the link!

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