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Géibheann on this year’s Irish exam Part I

June 5, 2017

Géibheann on this year’s Irish exam?

Is Géibheann on your Irish Exam?

Géibheann is a poem written by Caitlín Maude, and one of five poems assigned for students to study in preparation for Irish Paper 2.

You can find the English translation of Géibheann, plus our summary of it, below.


Ainmhí mé

ainmhí allta

as na teochreasa

a bhfuil clú agus cáil

ar mo scéimh

chroithfinn crainnte na coille


le mo gháir


ach anois

luím síos

agus breathnaím trí leathshúil

ar an gcrann aonraic sin thall


tagann na céadta daoine

chuile lá

a dhéanfadh rud ar bith


ach mé a ligean amach

Continuing reading: Géibheann on this year’s Irish exam Part II now. 


I’m an animal

wild animal

from the tropics

my beauty

is renowned


I tame trees of the forest


with my roar


but now

I am fallen

considering the three eyes

of that lone tree over there


hundreds of people come

every day

who’d do anything

for me

but let me out

A fairly straight-forward poem, Géibheann is narrated by the captive creature, a lion or tiger, we assume. The speaker highlights the conflict between their magnificence (their beauty, their roar), and the fact that they have been taken prisoner by man for man’s amusement. They feel powerless.

Want more? Access our teacher-written Géibheann Caitlín Maude Ardleibhéal revision notes.

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