Sunday, January 24, 1999

Robert Burns Nicht

You’re invited to celebrate
Robert Burns Nicht
on Sunday, January 24th, 1999, at 4 PM with
Neil O’Neill, Chieftain o’ the Puddin’ Race.


Innumerable Toasts to the Lassies
Immortal Memory Toast
Chieftain o’ the Puddin’
Neeps & Nips
Roastin Stirk w’a’the trimmin’s
Tipsy Laird
Kabbuck an’ Oatcakes
The Loyal Toast
A Wee Dram, Coffee & Tea
Please wear something plaid
(knickers don’t count unless you plan to air them),
Bring a potluck dish,
(see other side for traditional suggestions)
a favorite Burns poem and a song to share
Please RSVP in broad Lowland Scots accent

Traditional menu suggestions
to pique your cooking talents:

• Cock-a-Leekie (leek & potato soup), Scotch Broth (barley soup),

Bawd Bree (hare soup), Nessie-Tomato Soup 

• Haggis • 


Roastit Beef, Roastit Bubbly-Jock (turkey) & trimmin’s, Herring , Salmon 

• Champit Tatties (mashed potatoes); Bashed Neeps (turnips), 

Clapchaw (bashed neeps w’ tatties) 

• Hatit Kit (curded milk), Apple Frashie (tart), Sherry Trifle, Scotch Trifle, 

Tipsy Laird (guess the main ingredient) 

• Kabbuck o’ Cheese (Ayrshire Dunlop Cheese), Crowdie (cream cheese), 

(Robert Burns would’ve approved of a favorite local Cheese as well) 

• Bannocks , Oatcakes, Scones, Shortbreads 

-or - 

You may also bring your favorite Potluck Dish 

Your favorite single malt, bevvie & designated drinker (shaken, not stirred). 
(Please label your innovative masterpiece in broad Lowland Scots dialect.) 

Some hae meat and canna eat, 
And some wad eat that want it: 
But we hae meat and we can eat 
And sae the Lord be thankit. 

                       —Robert Burns b. 25 Jan. 1759; d.21 July 1796

(t'wood be nice to find the actual flyer)

BURNS SUPPER - Sequence of Events

   1. 4 - 5:45 PM  Hors d’Ouevres & drinks. Guests put food at appropriate food stations.
Remind guests to hold onto their labled glasses!
   2.  6 PM:   Chairman's speech to welcome company. 
Guests queue up glasses for toast (10 min.) Guests reassemble.
   3.  6:15PM:   Then Burns's Selkirk Grace follows: 
Some hae meat and canna eat,
And some wad eat that want it;
But we hae meat and we can eat,
And sae the Lord be thankit.
   4.     Chairman invites company to rise/welcome haggis being piped in. (David Winter)
   5.     Once haggis is placed on table, chef (me) & piper (David) have drink & leave. 
   6   6:25   Address to haggis given (Neil); company toasts haggis & it is cut open. 
   7.     Company eats buffet style meal.
   8.     Coffee served and Chairman announces an interval (usually 10 to 15 minutes), when company can relax before entertainment and speeches begin, etc. 
   9.   7:15- 7:30PM Immortal Memory by speaker (Jarion Monroe?)
  10.   Toast to the Lassies.
  11.    Now entertainment begins (songs and poems etc), after which the Chairman calls on company to sing "Auld Lang Syne"  at 9 PM.
  12.  9:30 Goodbyes.

Tuesday, January 5, 1999

Reading List: Medieval Celtic Culture 500-1500 AD; Melia

Medieval Celtic Culture 500- 1500 AD; 
Prof. Daniel Melia, Rhetoric
(Full participation/grade/audit: A)
SPRING 1999  Celtic Studies 128 (4 units), 

A study of medieval Celtic culture, its society, laws, religion, history, and the daily life of the Celtic peoples, as they are reflected in a selection of texts ranging from medieval literary works to legal texts and historical chronicles. “The past is another country; they do things differently there.” How did they do things in the medieval world? Who were”they” anyway? We will review existing evidence of daily life: law, literature, religion, family life. We will look at the question of modern reconstruction of the Celtic past. Is the past merely an artifact of the present?  How can we judge the validity of our scattered and difficult sources?

A Short History of Wales-- Dodd
Mabinogion & Other Tales--Ford
Oxford History of Ireland--Foster
Táin Bó Culaigne --Thos Kinsella
Confessions of St. Patrick _-tr Skinner
Tripartite Life of St Patrick

This class was intense, I poured my all into it, and Dan, Himself, was magnificent, so glad I got to spend time with him (as an overeager older student....I was burning with the desire to learn. Amergin's flame in the head, was a bonfire.)

I eventually plan to transcribe my Celtic Studies class notes, so this post is a placeholder (as well as a reading list). A reminder, a smack in the gob. What brought this on: I was asked to do a lecture on Celtic Bardic Poetry at Sacramento Poetry Center, and a) I was far too long gone from this material, b) I couldn't put my hands on the notes, but I at least still had some of the books. and TG for the internet. So many texts are now online (not so in 1999). I was able to reconstruct what I needed. But it was almost as bad as reinventing the wheel.   —MH 11/2015

Friday, January 1, 1999


King Bridei’s druid summoned up the wrath of the weather 
against Columba and so that the winds went against him. 
Loch Ness was an angry sea. No Christianity would land that day.
But Columba invoked Christ's name and sailed into the wind.
Christ is my druid, said Saint Columba, who sent a curse, an angel had struck the cup from Broichan’s hand. He fell gravely ill.
Word arrived and Columba sent a cure to King Bridei of Inverness.
He sent a charmed white stone from the mouth of the River Ness
as a cure to heal Bridei’s ailing druid, Broichan.
But only if he released the Irish slavegirl. When he finally said yes,
the white pebble floated to the top of the cup like a dove.
The moral victory of the cross is translated from the past, said Columba.
Briochan drank the water poured over the stone and was cured.
It is not known if he embraced Christianity or merely lost the power struggle,
it is clear they were cut from the same cloth. But he lived to see another day.
On the day King Bridei died, the stone returned to the mouth of the  river.

1/99 ( could be 12/ 98)
rev 6/00


Yew roots grow from the mouths of the dead.
Yew stakes were driven
between the star-crossed lovers,
Naoise and Deirdre, to keep them apart.
It did not bode well for them.
The roots drink deep from the dead
And speak of arrows, the letter of death.
The yew is a firm, strong God,
the word of a pure man, resurrection
planted in ancient graveyards.
Ogham was written on yew rods,
the sacred eburus tree was an ancestor,
the final I am in the highest arcana of trees.
The yew marks the places of death.
I have eaten the blood red berries
of the yew on a dare, and lived,
their toxic seeds hidden in my hand.

rev 6/00