Songs On Irish Poetry

by Gustavo Benavides

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Gustavo Benavides is a singer/songwriter from Argentina. For Songs On Irish Poetry he has set a few poems by Irish poets to music and he sings them with the backing only of his guitar. The songs and arrangements here are simple and uncluttered so that the melodies and poems are never overshadowed.
Originally released as a CDR (DV31) in 2007.

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released September 9, 2012

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Track Name: Blessing (John Montague)
A feel of warmth in this place.
In winter air, a scent of harvest.
No form of prayer is needed,
When by sudden grace attended.
Naturally, we fall from grace.
Mere humans, we forget what light
Led us, lonely, to this place.
Track Name: The Planter's Daughter (Austin Clarke)
When night stirred at sea
And the fire brought a crowd in,
They say that her beauty
Was music in mouth
And few in the candlelight
Thought her too proud,
For the house of the planter
Is known by the trees.

Men that had seen her
Drank deep and were silent,
The women were speaking
Wherever she went -
As a bell that is rung
Or a wonder told shyly,
And O she was the Sunday
In every week.
Track Name: Prelude (John Millington Synge)
Till south I went and west and south again,
Through Wicklow from the morning till the night,
And far from cities, and the sights of men,
Lived with the sunshine and the moon's delight.

I knew the stars, the flowers, and the birds,
The gray and wintry sides of many glens,
And did but half remember human words,
In converse with the mountains, moors, and fens.
Track Name: I See His Blood Upon The Rose (Joseph Mary Plunkett)
I see his blood upon the rose
And in the stars the glory of his eyes,
His body gleams amid eternal snows,
His tears fall from the skies.

I see his face in every flower;
The thunder and the singing of the birds
Are but his voice—and carven by his power
Rocks are his written words.

All pathways by his feet are worn,
His strong heart stirs the ever-beating sea,
His crown of thorns is twined with every thorn,
His cross is every tree.
Track Name: Christ's Bounty (Anonymous)
I pray you, Christ, to change my heart,
To make it whole;
Once you took on flesh like mine,
Now take my soul.

Ignominy and pain you knew,
The lash, the scourge,
You, the perfect molten metal
Of my darkened forge.

You make the bright sun bless my head,
Put ice beneath my feet,
Send salmon swarming in the tides,
Give crops of wheat.

When Eve's wild children come to you
With prayerful words,
You crowd the rivers with fine fish,
The sky with birds.

You make the small flowers thrive
In the wholesome air,
Your spread sweetness through the world.
What miracle can compare?
Track Name: The Everlasting Voices (WB Yeats)
O SWEET everlasting Voices be still;
Go to the guards of the heavenly fold
And bid them wander obeying your will
Flame under flame, till Time be no more;
Have you not heard that our hearts are old,
That you call in birds, in wind on the hill,
In shaken boughs, in tide on the shore?
O sweet everlasting Voices be still.