The Land of Youth


(Midir, a prince of Danaan invites his beloved Etain to Fairyland)

O fair-haired woman, will you come with me to the marvelous land, full of music, where the hair is primrose yellow and the body white as snow?

There none speaks of "mine" or "thine" - white are the teeth and black the brows; eyes flash with many-colored lights, and the hue of the foxglove is on every cheek.

Pleasant to the eye are the plains of Erin, but they are a desert to the Great Plain.

Heady is the ale of Erin, but the ale of the Great Plain is headier.

It is one of the wonders of that land that youth does not change into age.

Smooth and sweet are the streams that flow through it; mead and wine abound of every kind; there men are all fair, without blemish; there women conceive without sin.

We see around us on every side, yet no man seeth us; the cloud of the sin of Adam hides us from their observation.

O lady, if you wilt come to my strong people, the purest of gold shall be on thy head - thy meat shall be swine's flesh unsalted, new milk and mead shalt thou drink with me there, O fair-haired woman.

- The Wooing of Etain, from the Yellow Book of Lecan.