Tuesday, 25 March 2014

The Fairies by: William Allingham




      To be honest I didn't really know what to write about today and yet after scrolling through images of faeries on Pinterest I felt the distinct desire to feature something about the fairies or the fae folk. The fae folk are commonly known as fairies or faeries but sprites, leprechauns and other ethereal creatures are also included in this term. Ever since I was small I've always felt that faeries existed despite the fact that my main academic focus was science until this year. In my opinion some things, like aspects of faeries and witchcraft, will always be far beyond the grasp of scientific understanding, you just feel them to be true.

         Perhaps faeries exist as they are commonly pictured or perhaps they just exist as magical energies which traverse between the otherworld and Earth. Whether you believe in the fae folk or not is like most intuitive aspects something which only you can decide for yourself. Whether you decide for yourself that faeries exist, or not, hopefully you will be able to find some enjoyment from the faerie artwork included in this post and from one of my favourite poems:


The Fairies 

William Allingham
1824-1889



Up the airy mountain,
Down the rushy glen,
We daren't go a-hunting
For fear of little men;
Wee folk, good folk,
Trooping all together;
Green jacket, red cap,
And white owl's feather!

Down along the rocky shore
Some make their home,
They live on crispy pancakes
Of yellow tide-foam;
Some in the reeds
Of the black mountain lake,
With frogs for their watch-dogs,
All night awake.


The old King sits;
He is now so old and gray
He's nigh lost his wits.
With a bridge of white mist
Columbkill he crosses,
On his stately journeys
From Slieveleague to Rosses;
Or going up with music
On cold starry nights
To sup with the Queen
Of the gay Northern Lights.

They stole little Bridget
For seven years long;
When she came down again
Her friends were all gone.
They took her lightly back,
Between the night and morrow,
They thought that she was fast asleep,
But she was dead with sorrow.
They have kept her ever since
Deep within the lake,
On a bed of flag-leaves,
Watching till she wake.


By the craggy hill-side,
Through the mosses bare,
They have planted thorn-trees
For pleasure here and there.
If any man so daring
As dig them up in spite,
He shall find their sharpest thorns
In his bed at night.

Up the airy mountain,
Down the rushy glen,
We daren't go a-hunting
For fear of little men;
Wee folk, good folk,
Trooping all together;
Green jacket, red cap,
And white owl's feather!


If you're interested in a brief musical interpretation of Allingham's poem I suggest you check out King of the Fairies sung by the Irish Rovers:


Want to see more fairy art? Visit my Fae Folk board on Pinterest

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