The Celtic Literature Collective

The First Song of Yscolan
Black Book of Carmarthen XXVI

Black thy horse, black thy cope, 
Black thy head, black thyself, 
Yes, black! art thou Yscolan?

I am Yscolan the scholar, 
Slight is my clouded reason, 
There is no drowning the woe of him who offends a sovereign.

For having burnt a church, and destroyed the cattle of a school,
And caused a book to be submerged, 
My penance is a heavy affliction.

Creator of the creatures, of supports
The greatest, pardon me my iniquity!
He who betrayed Thee, deceived me.

A full year was given me
At Bangor on the pole of a weir;
Consider thou my suffering from sea-worms.

If I knew what I now know
As plain as the wind in the top branches of waving trees, 
What I did I should never have done.

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