Lyrics

Caledonia

Crógacht (2009)

Tracklist:

1. Slán
2. Conlaoch
3. Isle Of Skye
4. Scáthach
5. Feats Of War
6. Shattering Swords
7. Ár Nasc Fola
8. Gilded Oars
9. Baile's Strand

Click here to read about the lyrical concept

Lyrics:

Slán

instrumental intro

Conlaoch

I am history turned into legend
I am victory and fire, the future and desire
I am triumph and honour
I am memory turned into myth
I am Conlaoch

On the streams of time I ride
My fate unveiled before my eyes
Suffering neither rebirth nor demise
Death’s peace will never be mine

While my soul soars high
Amazed I glimpse my life pass by
Forever proud and ever free
I heed the call of the Daoine Sidhe

I am history turned into legend
I am victory and fire, the future and desire
I am triumph and honour
I am memory turned into myth
I am Conlaoch

As I lay slain upon the sacred shore
Leaving behind my body
From this empty shell to dimensions unknown
I still hear my father’s grievous roar

“I am Cuchulainn
Beside the raging sea I’m left to moan
Sorrow I am for I brought down my only son
A raven I see above the stone”

For ages now I watch and learn
As history transpires
Man’s greatest curse is to long
For what he can never acquire
For ages now I watch and learn
As destiny unveils
Man’s greatest virtue to aspire
To chase his dream and make it real

I am history turned into legend
I am victory and fire, the future and desire
I am triumph and honour
I am memory turned into myth
I am Conlaoch

And while my soul soars high
By geasa no longer bound
I answer the call
Of the masters of the mounds

I am heir of Dún Dealgan
And thus my death was brought about

Isle Of Skye

To the Land Of Shadows once he came
Young warrior of Erin
With valour, honour and strength
Cuchulainn was his name

To win the heart of fair Emer
The Plain Of Ill-luck he crossed
To search for knowledge of war

The Perilous Glen he traversed
Then guided by Lugh, one fatherly hand
His scorched path he followed to the
... Isle Of Skye

Yonder,
The scholars were gathered
Among them Ferdiad,
The Firbolg who was his friend:
“Welcome Hound of Culan,
I hope you’ll stay by our side
Beyond the Bridge Of Leaps,
Scáthach’s stronghold you’ll find on the
... Isle Of Skye

All by yourself you must stride
Not challenge fate with false pride
Beware of the bridge to reach the far side

All by yourself be your own guide
To make the Salmon leap up high
Scáthach you’ll find on the Isle of Skye”

Crógacht!

Three times over Cuchulainn tried and failed
And at the fourth attempt he finally prevailed

To the Land Of Shadows once he came
Young warrior of Erin
With valour, honour and strength
Cuchulainn was his name

Yonder,
The scholars were gathered
Among them Ferdiad,
the Firbolg who was his friend:
“Welcome Hound of Culan,
I hope you’ll stay by our side

Beyond the Bridge Of Leaps,
Scáthach’s stronghold you’ll find on the
... Isle Of Skye”

To win the heart of fair Emer
The Plain Of Ill-luck he crossed
To search for knowledge of war

The Perilous Glen he traversed
Then guided by Lugh, one fatherly hand
His scorched path he followed to the
... Isle Of Skye

But little did the hero know
What tragedy upon him
Fate would one day bestow…

Scáthach

Endless their journey had seemed
Slain, beaten, a defeat
Exiled from the Scythian steppes they had been
No retreat!

With four Roman legions hot on their trail
Betrayed, beaten, a defeat
Two sisters bound for revenge
To Alba in strong gales they set sail

Young Aoife’s lover wavered
In a duel, fate would decide
The Dacian prince challenged
Two chariots would ride

No match for the queen
The prince soon lay dead
This deed of her sister
Aoife would never forget

Mighty Scáthach,
Scythian queen,
Fierce Scáthach,
I fight for thee

Oh listen to me now as I tell her tale

Mighty Scáthach,
Scythian queen,
Fierce Scáthach,
I die for thee

Oh hear us now as we sing her tale

And in turn, I will teach
The bravest of thee
Who wants to join
And once fight for me

For Rome will one day
Feel the scorn
Of a Scythian queen
Named Scáthach

Now the Picts had been watching
For the first time they saw
They decided to worship
A true goddess in awe

Come and live on this island
The Picts now cried
For we will ever defend
On our land of shadows
The Roman eagle
Shall never descend!

Endless their journey had seemed
Slain, beaten, a defeat
Exiled from the Scythian steppes they had been
No retreat!

With four Roman Legions hot on their trail
Betrayed, beaten, a defeat
Two sisters bound for revenge
To Alba they set sail
Oh hear me now as I sing her tale

Mighty Scáthach,
Scythian queen,
Fierce Scáthach,
I die for thee

Oh listen to me now as I tell her tale

Mighty Scáthach,
Scythian queen,
Fierce Scáthach,
We pray to thee

Oh hear us now as we sing her tale

And in turn, I will teach
The bravest of thee
Who wants to join
And once fight for me

For Rome will one day
Feel the scorn
Of a Scythian queen
Named Scáthach

Feats Of War

I bid thee welcome,
Valorous one
I scried your arrival
And know what must be done

So swear your allegiance
And you may remain
I will give you my guidance
For a year and a day

Now enter my fortress
And stand by my side
I’ve never before
Met a warrior so proud

Swear your allegiance
And you may remain
I will give you my guidance
For a year and a day

Oh brave young Cuchulainn
Day by day you learn more
Such courage and such vigour
I train and I teach you all feats of war

Come let me show you
Crafts of battle lore
Sword-edge and shield rim
The grand deeds of war

Swear your allegiance
And you may remain
I give you all my guidance
For a year and a day

Oh brave young Cuchulainn
Day by day you learn more
Such strength and such honour
I train and I teach you all feats of war

Now there’s only one skill left
Most terrible of all
Barbed spear, Gae Bolg
The deadliest feat to call

You’ve sworn your allegiance
And you have remained
I gave you all my guidance
For a year and a day

So now I will have nothing
To teach you no more
Such courage and vigour
Strength and such honour
All heroes shall hear
Of your deeds of war

The only champion
Improved to perfection
The greatest warrior you are
For now you have learned
All my feats of war

Now you have learned
All my feats of war

Shattering Swords

Awake, proud Cuchulainn,
From thy deep dark slumber,
Hear the sounds of war-horns
And of swords that are shattering
Awake, proud Cuchulainn,
Haste thee to the battle,
Hear Aoife’s war-cries echoing
And the swords that she’s shattering

Wielding mighty Dacian steel,
She stands victorious on the battlefield
No hero, nor Scáthach herself
Could ever hope to make her yield

For on this day, so many years ago,
It happened that her prince was slain
Driving his chariot and swinging his sword,
Now she seeks vengeance in his name

Slay, proud Cuchulainn,
Make her warriors bleed
Tides of war are turning
Three heroes at your feet
Now Aoife herself is charging
And your sword will soon be shattering

Three mighty blows the princess dealt
And with the fourth, the warrior fell
His weapon, broken off at the hilt,
Cuchulainn now would soon be killed

Yet, right before the final strike,
Aoife heard Scáthach’s distant cry:
“Ah, look, Aoife’s two horses and her chariot
They have fallen down the glen and have all perished”

As she paused to glance around,
Cuchulainn sprang up threw her to the ground,
“Life for life”, Aoife suddenly cried
“Three demands to me”, the hero replied:

“Give in to Scáthach,
Nor ever defy her again,
On this island you’ll always remain,
Bear me a son,
Conlaoch be his name!”

To all this, Aoife agreed
For this brave man who had made her yield
Reminded her of her long lost love
And finally she found peace

Ár nasc fola

instrumental

Gilded Oars

In this small boat of bronze
I’ve set sail on a journey beyond
Towards a long destined fate

In my mind still echo the songs
My mother Aoife used to sing

Of her life in anger
The quest for revenge
Of Cuchulainn rising
Prevailed in the end
Of their bond of blood
The birth of their son
Named Conlaoch

Of the day the time had come
For my father to depart
To leave behind his blissful life
And break my mother’s heart

Thus on that day my father spoke:

“This ring I give you for our child
As you raise him, train him well
Scáthach will teach the feats,
When he’s old enough to wear my ring,
He must go out to seek his king

Yet, three geasa I will put on him:

First,
He should not give way
To any hero from this plane

Second,
He should never tell his name
Through fear to any warrior in this world

Third,
To any man, however strong
He should not refuse a fight

For the greatest warrior I want him to be,
Even mightier and more fierce than me.”

And thus I was born and raised
Like my father once had imposed
With an iron hand I was trained
In Scáthach’s feats of war

In my mind still echo the songs
My mother Aoife used to sing

Of her life in anger
The quest for revenge
Of Cuchulainn rising
Prevailed in the end
Of their bond of blood,
The birth of their son
Named Conlaoch

I am Conlaoch!

Then when I was old enough
For my thumb to fill the ring
Tears sprang from my mother’s eyes
As I asked her one last time to sing
And wave me goodbye
As I forever left the Isle of Skye

So Erin, here I come
Cuchulainn’s only son,
Rowing towards your sacred shores
In this small boat of bronze
With gilded oars

Baile’s Strand

The Red Branch knights are gathered
For Ulster’s honour at Baile’s strand

Hither from across the waves
A young boy with a merry face
But armed as if for fighting
Came onto the shore
“Thou shall not land on Erin’s soil”,
Cuinaire cried out,
“Until thou hast revealed thy name!”

For all you ask I can reveal but I must conceal
My name and lineage
Nor from my course you can make me stray away
For I am under bounds and cannot disobey

In battle I will not give way
Nor ever will I speak my name

If challenged I will draw my blade
Here on this strand I will meet my fate

I’ll only answer with my blade
No man can stray me from my way

“Then you shall die”, Cuinaire replied,
“For no one unknown may enter our realm”

For Ulster’s honour many warriors were sent
But to none did he give his unhallowed name

To wound them or kill, the spell to fulfil
The geasa forced upon his infinite will

Any attempt to impede him was doomed and destined to fail

I’ll only answer with my blade
No man can stray me from my way

In battle I will not give way
Nor ever will I speak my name

Finally Cuchulainn himself was summoned,
The King had ordered him to defeat this foe
And towards tragedy he strode

A fierce battle ensued,
More than a match for Cuchulainn,
The young boy proved

Dealing blow after blow,
The lad forced Chuchulainn back
With a strength and speed
The hound of Culan had never met

As the battle continued in the water
Two times Cuchulainn almost drowned,
Yet on the third, he remembered the Gae Bolg

And with the strength of the hero’s light
He threw it through the waves with all his might

The Gae Bolg, is it true?
Only one may wield it, is it really you?

To a tragic end the story seems to have come
Together they would have crushed the gates of Rome
As Cuchulainn bore the boy in his arms towards the shore
He saw his own ring that the brave boy had worn

Hence the father realized what he had just done
Oh Lord, he had slain his only son!

But what he did not know, at that time on that shore
Through Elatan’s ring Conloach’s soul now soared
To take his place into myth and memory
Amongst the Riders of the Daoine Sidhe

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