Star of the Sea: A Postcolonial/Postmodern Voyage into the Irish FamineMain MenuAbout This ProjectStar of the Sea OverviewJoseph O'ConnorIn this section, you will learn more about Joseph O'Connor and the other works he producedPostcolonial TheoryPostmodernismThe Gothic in Star of the SeaHistorical FiguresLanguage and Music in Irish CultureBiology of the FamineLandlords, Tenants, and EvictionsIn the following pages, you'll learn about landlords, tenants, and evictions during the Irish Potato FamineGovernment Policies and EmigrationMediaMemorialsContributorsBrief biographies of the people who made this book.
Sinéad O'Connor - Skibbereen (with The Chieftains) from Long Journey Home
12016-03-14T13:17:55-07:00Emily Bengtson492ae61bd2e39593725a3c9c3faa12fc78cda4ec82201Sinéad O'Connor - Skibbereen (with The Chieftains) from Long Journey Home (1998 Television Mini-series) [Soundtrack] O, father dear I often hear you speak ...plain2016-03-14T13:17:55-07:00YouTube2012-03-15T22:22:12.000Z6VWPzsPqcHQmarriccardoEmily Bengtson492ae61bd2e39593725a3c9c3faa12fc78cda4ec
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1media/4640518267_8e9997a873_b.jpg2016-03-07T13:31:58-08:00Skibbereen27plain2016-04-06T13:55:04-07:00This version is sung by Sinéad O'Connor, Joseph O'Connor's sister. The song tells the story of a young boy asking his father why they left Ireland. The boy has heard great tales of his homeland and couldn’t imagine why his father would leave it.
The father then tells his son that though he loved his home, he could not stay. The song mentions the potato blight, livestock dying, high rent and taxes, and even eviction by fire, which was common in the time.
O son, I loved my native land with energy and pride 'Til a blight came o'er my crops, my sheep and cattle died My rent and taxes were too high, I could not them redeem And that's the cruel reason that I left old Skibbereen.
O well do I remember the bleak December day The landlord and the sheriff came to drive us all away They set my roof on fire with cursed English spleen And that's another reason that I left old Skibbereen.
The melody itself is slow and haunting, almost as if the memory of Ireland is haunting the father. It’s his homeland, and he surely has happy memories there, but now when he thinks of Skibbereen, he is reminded of the horrible reasons that he is not there and that those conditions caused the mother of his son to die. The lyrics and the melody are heartbreaking.
Researcher/Writer: Michaila Gerlach Technical Writers: Emily Bengtson and Maren Connell