Lyrics and Songs

The Twelve Days of Yule

 

The following is a variation on the famous song about the twelve Days of Christmas from Scotland.

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Gather a few friends around the fire. Have one of them say or sing the first verse aloud. Then have everyone repeat it, the same with the next verse and so on. As the verses get longer, whoever makes a slip in repeating the lines pays a forfeit – any small object they may possess such as a candy or a nut.

(Note also the 13th day of Yule – a sure sign of an ancient origin.)

The Days of Yule

The King sent his lady on the first Yule day
A papingo-aye (exotic parrot).
Who learns my carol and carries it away?

The king sent his lady on the second Yule day
Three partricks (partridges), a papingo-aye.
Who learns my carol and carries it away?

The king sent his lady on the third Yule day
Three plovers, three partricks, a papingo-aye.
Who learns my carol and carries it away?

The king sent his lady on the fourth Yule day
A goose that was grey
Three plovers, three partricks, a papingo-aye.
Who learns my carol and carries it away?

The king sent his lady on the fifth Yule day
Three starlings, a goose that was grey
Three plovers, three partricks, a papingo-aye.
Who learns my carol and carries it away?

The king sent his lady on the sixth Yule day
Three goldspinks, three starlings,
a goose that was grey
Three plovers, three partricks, a papingo-aye.
Who learns my carol and carries it away?

The king sent his lady on the seventh Yule day
A bull that was brown, three goldspinks
Three starlings, a goose that was grey
Three plovers, three partricks, a papingo-aye.
Who learns my carol and carries it away?

The king sent his lady on the eighth Yule day
Three ducks a merry laying
A bull that was brown, three goldspinks
Three starlings, a goose that was grey
Three plovers, three partricks, a papingo-aye.
Who learns my carol and carries it away?

The king sent his lady on the ninth Yule day
Three swans a-merry swimming,
Three ducks a merry laying
A bull that was brown, three goldspinks
Three starlings, a goose that was grey
Three plovers, three partricks, a papingo-aye.
Who learns my carol and carries it away?

The king sent his lady on the tenth Yule day
An Arabian baboon,
Three swans a-merry swimming,
Three ducks a merry laying
A bull that was brown, three goldspinks
Three starlings, a goose that was grey
Three plovers, three partricks, a papingo-aye.
Who learns my carol and carries it away?

The King sent his lady on the eleventh Yule day
Three hinds a-merry hunting,
An Arabian baboon,
Three swans a-merry swimming,
Three ducks a merry laying
A bull that was brown, three goldspinks
Three starlings, a goose that was grey
Three plovers, three partricks, a papingo-aye.
Who learns my carol and carries it away?

The King sent his lady on the twelfth Yule day
Three maids a-merry dancing,
Three hinds a-merry hunting, An Arabian baboon,
Three swans a-merry swimming,
Three ducks a merry laying
A bull that was brown, three goldspinks
Three starlings, a goose that was grey
Three plovers, three partricks, a papingo-aye.
Who learns my carol and carries it away?

The King sent his lady on the thirteenth Yule day
Three stalks a-merry corn,
Three maids a-merry dancing,
Three hinds a-merry hunting, An Arabian baboon,
Three swans a-merry swimming,
Three ducks a merry laying
A bull that was brown, three goldspinks
Three starlings, a goose that was grey
Three plovers, three partricks, a papingo-aye.
Who learns my carol and carries it away?

From: The Winter Solstice

Winter Solstice Song for Yule


LYRICS:

On the longest night we search for the light,
And we find it deep within.
Open your eyes to embrace what is wise,
And see the light of your own soul shining.

(Chorus)

Wrap up in the cloak of starry darkness my child,
And you’ll find the center of all things.
For from this space of the deepest dark place,
Life Eternal does spring.

(Chorus)

So when you find that spark
When you dream in the dark,
Hold it close to your heart and know.
All that you see is all that can be
When you give birth to the dreams of your soul.

Chorus:
Enter the night and you’ll find the light,
That will carry you to your dreams.
Enter the night, let your spirit take flight,
In the field of infinite possibilities

Music by Lisa Thiel

The Song of the Holly Fairy

holly

O, I am green in Winter~time,
When other trees are brown;
Of all the trees (So saith the rhyme)
The holly bears the crown.
December days are drawing near.
When I shall come to town,
And carol-boys go singing clear
Of all the trees (O hush and hear!)
The holly bears the crown!
For who so well-beloved and merry
As the scarlet Holly Berry?

Flower Fairies of the Winter,
Cicely Mary Barker

Winter Solstice Chant

Geese and standing stones and mist,
Baying hounds and hooting owl,
Sparkling stars, snow is crisp
Herne is here. Bring forth the Bowl.

winter_solstice

longest night of the year
winter Solstice
Alban Arthuan
celebrations
holly king
oak king
father Christmas
introspect
the future
Yule log,
evergreen
cedar
holly
mistletoe
candles
clove studded fruit
nutmeg
spices
wassail
ale
caroling
mumming
family bonds
love
peace goodwill
honor the God and Goddess

A Song of Cailleach

cailleach-bheur

“Bha da shleagha chaola chatha
air an taobh eile dh’an chaillich
Bha ‘h-aodann dubh-ghorm air dreach a ‘ghuail
‘S a deud cnabadach cnamh-ruadh.

Bha aon suil ghlumach ‘na ceann
Bu luaithe na rionnag gheamhraidh;
Craobh mhineach chas air a ceann
Mar choill inich de ‘n t-seana chrithinn.

 

Translation:

There were two slender spears of battle
upon the other side of the carlin
her face was blue-black, of the lustre of coal,
And her bone tufted tooth was like rusted bone.

In her head was one deep pool-like eye
Swifter than a star in winter
Upon her head gnarled brushwood
like the clawed old wood of the aspen root.

From:
Popular Tales of the West Highlands – Vol 3

Related content:
The Powers That Be – The Old Woman Cailleach

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