A fair and a feast for a new Squire

VII
A fair and a feast for a new squire
The young master of Dunoran
There was dancing and fiddling
A welcome for all to come see
This grand estate at its finest

We had wine for the gentlemen and ladies
Beer and cider enough to float a ship on
All the farmhands and the stableboys
All the maids and the servant girls
All the pipers in the county came to
Raise a cheer for our Sir Dominick

Feast for a week and then feast for a month
Feast till the weather breaks and work returns
‘Till none but the master was left feasting
And dancing and drinking and dicing
A sinful darkness upon him, they said,
A bold compulsion to drain a fortune
As though it were a barrel. A fever
That raged and barked, that burned all it touched
‘till everything was gone and nothing was left
And the house we feasted in stood empty
And disgraced and quiet and alone

The master of Dunoran
The last of the Sarsfields
Shame of an old family
Gone to travel abroad
Gone to flee the money lenders
While debts still grow and this sad
Old house rots in the woods

Gone for a year, gone for three
Waiting for an east wind
To blow home through the mountains
A cold and lonesome sound
So hopeless and afraid
“It is all over with me,” it says
“It is all past praying for now.”

 

The heir to a fortune squanders his inheritance on wine and gambling. Destitute and alone, he makes a desperate bargain with a gentleman he meets one midnight. For seven years he will have all the riches he craves. But when seven years are done, what will become of him then?

Sheridan Le Fanu’s story of a man’s pact with the devil is retold in 14 poems by Rufus Woodward.

‘Sir Dominick’s Bargain’ is Chapbook number one of four volumes published by the Olgada Press.

To read all four for free, please visit us at Amazon, Smashwords, ibooks, or Barnes and Noble.

 

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