Old Crone of Cairn Hill

Cairn Hill in North Longford
Cairn Hill in North Longford

The Old Crone of Beara is said to have dropped the stones that make up the cairns on top of Cairn Hill in Longford, but that is a tale common accross the country. As with many legends, the stories vary, with some saying she was another personification of the Goddess Bridget…

She stole the saints prayer books, her own powers to keep:
For his creed spelled the end of her spells,
But the cripples cries woke the saint from his sleep!
So another of the old stories tells.

There she lies, set in stone, waiting for her love to return:
Cast there by the hand of the saint
The sun high in the sky the summer stones does burn
Creeping shadows around it as if they an artist does paint.

Does he come, does he come, Mannannan Mac Lir
Comes from the hard cold crashing waves of the sea…
She waits for him as the seasons pass… will he come for her
From the saints curse his touch set her free…

On Cairn Hill there stands the stones she let fall
From her apron as she flew overhead
Yet more tell tales it is not there at all
But in theirs her rocks cover their dead.

She drank in her time from the Well of Long Youth
And so she danced in the seasons of the sun:
But she aged with the year as we age with years truth:
At Samhain her old age again begun.

But she is lonely now, and cries a widows silent tears
The sadness those who linger and wait hopeless can be…
The old Crone of Beara, set forever in stone
Awaits her lover as she looks across the wild sea…




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