“Ta Me Mo Shui (I Am Awake)”


Gaelic. The singer lies awake until cock crow though the rest of the household sleeps: he had met a banshee the night before and she had doomed him to love her "until crack of Doomsday"


If you were brought up on the stories I was brought up on, you probably just think of a banshee as a (non-human) creature whose cry causes death. Not so in Irish legend; "Bean Sidhe" is a "woman of the hills" -- a member, presumably, of the old fairy folk, the Aes Sidhe, the "people of the hills." The Bean Sidhe may be young and beautiful, or an old hag; a family may have its own special Bean Sidhe -- an immortal, who announces the death of each member of the family. Legends of a young man falling in love with one are rare, but it fits the Irish concept. - RBW


  1. Tunney-SongsThunder, pp. 37-39, "Ta Me Mo Shui" (1 text)
  2. OBoyle 24, "Ta me 'mo Shui" (1 text, 1 tune)
  3. BI, TST037


Author: unknown
Earliest date: 1976 (OBoyle)
Found in: Ireland