Cathair na nÓg / City of Youth

Cathair na nÓg

‘Sea, cathair an allais í is cathair an stró,
Cathair na ngalar í a bhíodh ann fadó,
Cathair na spórt í is cathair na bpóg,
Cathair na n-amhrán í is Cathair na nÓg.

Tá abhainn ann atá glé is drithleach,
Tá staidiam ann atá niamhrach soiléir,
Tá caisleán greanta ann i gceartlár na cathrach,
Is tá luisne ar foluain ann le port an aeir,

Tá croí na tuaithe ann ar fud na páirce,
Tá mná is páistí ann, tá tuath is cléir,
Tá eaglais is ollscoil ann, tá cúirt is margadh,
Tá an scréachóg is na faoileáin ann is na colúir go léir.

Tá cosa in airde ann ag sruthanna daoine
Ag dul trí na haircéid ann ina dtuilte caoine,
Tá meidhir mhódhúil ann idir túr is tábhairne,
Tá cairdeas is caint ann ag díoladh an bhairille.

Ach tá cumha i leataobh ann – mo chroíse faoi scáil
Toisc Cathair na nÓg a bheith go deo ó mo dháil,
‘Sea, i gCathair na nÓg nach é mise atá dóite —
Nuair a bhí mise im óige nach í an chathair a bhí stróicthe.

City of Youth

It’s the city of sweat, it’s the city of woe,
It’s the city of diseases long time ago,
It’s the city of kissing, it’s the city of sport,
It’s the city of singing, it’s the City of Youth.

There’s a river there that’s sparkling and pretty,
And there’s a gleaming stadium that’s clearly seen,
There’s an ornate castle right there in the city,
And in the lilting air there hangs a sheen.

There’s a countryside feeling all round the park,
There are women and children there, there’s cleric and lay,
There’s church and university there, there’s court and mart,
There’s the seagull and the pigeons – there’s even the jay.

There’s high stepping there as a stream of people
In a kindly flood goes down an arcade,
There’s easy cheer there twixt pub and steeple,
There’s friendly talk there as the rounds are paid,

But there’s a pang to one side in my downcast heart,
Since the City of Youth ever lies beyond my part.
Yes, in the City of Youth it is me that has had it —
When I was young it was the city that was past it.

Text and translation by Barry Tobin



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