On a quiet evening at the beginning of May,
When the bat was in the skies,
I heard a tearful young maiden
Singing beneath the shadow of the green branches…”
– “Tha Mo Ghaol Air Àird A’ Chuain,”
as arranged by Julie Fowlis, Kris Drever & Iain MacDonald
Julie Fowlis performs a traditional Gaelic tune about being parted, lost love, fear, grief, and joy. It has a magical, mystical quality to it.
My daughter, a mom, visual artist and illustrator (who is often at home caring for her daughters as her partner – and true love – travels), was inspired. She collaborated with Julie to create this video – “Tha mo ghaol air àird a’ chuain” or “My love is on the high seas.”
I love the air of mysteriousness and both the fear and love of this woman set side-by-side. It captures the longing we feel when our hearts are reaching out to what is most dear for us…but still we can’t quite “touch” it. Finally, the love and longing manifest into reality – from darkness, joy emerges. Her true love touches her hand and the spells of grief and longing are broken at last. Joyful reunion begins.
Life is like that sometimes and we treasure the miracles that are beyond words. These are the tales that only music and art can help us to capture and even then only partially.
Most of us know the feeling. Some reunions we experience in full now, others we still long and wait for – holding vigil in our hearts. But hope continues. We can feel the presence and connection that love provides in life and beyond. We know the truth: though we can’t always see it, love abides and lives.
Hope you enjoy it. Share it if you do!
(Shared with permission of Julie Fowlis and Courtney O’Connell Carlson.)
“Tha Mo Ghaol Air Àird A’ Chuain” English/Gaelic Lyrics and information