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Gates to the Gods

Tomás Ó Cárthaigh at Tubberpatrick well, with rags on the Fairy Tree in the background
Tomás Ó Cárthaigh at Tubberpatrick well, with rags on the Fairy Tree in the background

Gates to the gods, the people flocks,
To worship at the waters pure,
To leave tokens, offerings there…
Take home some water as a cure…
Should that well be fouled somehow,
By folk it was often said…
It would dry up, being desecrated…
To spring up elsewhere instead…

Wise preachers of the Christian faith,
Incorporated this by blessing giving,
Pattern days then grew at these…
Strength of a faith forgiving…
In Ballycumber, an evil Landlord
Knew more of Dogma than of God…
Laced his well with broken glass
To main those who in it trod…

Sometimes God works in mysterious ways,
Causes from a distance an effect…
But in Ballycumber angered so was he…
He acted more direct…
Through the fury of the villagers,
Who the landlords feet on his own glass they impailed…
He dies some days later in pain…
Remorseful, in prayer he  wailed.

Saint Patrick it was said stopped by a well,
Tubbererpatrick, on Nabelwy Lakes banks,
On his way to slew Crom  Cruach,
To bless it, pray and give thanks.
Each well has its own  saint who blessed it,
Beside many a fairy tree,
Offerings of rags, coins and holy medals given,
So that well of an ailment someone may be.

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