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Trasna na dTonnta (Across the Waves)

Kristie Theobald

Sydney, Australia

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Artist's Description

This image is inspired by the beautiful Irish song – ‘Trasna na dTonnta’ – Irish Gaelic for ‘Across the Waves’. I found out about this song after listening to a recording of the 20th century Scottish song ‘Westering Home’ – which shares the same tune and heard the singer performing the chorus in Irish. Then I found out about the Irish version of the song – listened to it – and of course I had no idea what the words meant (since I’m an Aussie!) until I looked it up on the internet.

Lyrics – source from Wikipedia:

Irish version

Trasna na dtonnta, dul siar, dul siar,
Slán leis an uaigneas ‘is slán leis an gcian;
Geal é mo chroí, agus geal í an ghrian,
Geal bheith ag filleadh go hÉirinn!

Chonaic mo dhóthain de Thíortha i gcéin,
Ór agus airgead, saibhreas an tsaoil,
Éiríonn an croí ‘nam le breacadh gach lae
‘S mé druidim le dúthaigh mo mhuintir!

Ar mo thriall siar ó éirigh mo chroí
An aimsir go hálainn is tonnta deas réidh
Stiúradh go díreach go dúthaigh mo chliabh
‘S bheidh mé in Éirinn amárach!

Muintir an Iarthair ‘siad cairde mo chroí,
Fáilte ‘is féile bheidh romham ar gach taobh.
Ar fhágaint an tsaoil seo, sé ghuidhim ar an Rí
Gur leosan a shinfear i gcill mé.

Translation of the Irish:

Over the waves, going west, going west!
Good-bye to loneliness and to the distant remoteness;
Bright is my heart and bright is the sun,
Happy to be returning to Ireland!

I saw my fill of countries abroad,
Gold and silver, the wealth of the world,
My heart rises in me with the break of each day,
As I draw closer to the land of my people!

On my journey – oh! my heart rises!
The weather is beautiful and the waves are settled
Steering directly to land of my bosom
And I’ll be in Ireland tomorrow!

People of the West, they’re the friends of my heart,
Welcome and celebration awaits me on every side.
Leaving this life I pray to the Lord
That it’s with them I’ll be stretched in the graveyard!

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desktop tablet-landscape content-width tablet-portrait workstream-4-across phone-landscape phone-portrait

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