Cruachan

The Sea Queen of Connaught

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I tell a tale of a pirate queen
Grace O'Malley was her name
Through her deeds and actions on the seas
She found fortune, respect and fame

Born to a seafaring family and educated well
Salt water in her veins, at sea she would raise hell!
She preyed on trading ships, that entered her domain
And before the Nine Years war, became a British bane!

When she was but a child, she cut off all her hair
In defiance of her father who brought her to despair!
You cannot sail my ships with hair that is so long
But, father, can't you see? All my hair is gone

She prospered as a Pirate-Queen
Patrolling our Atlantic coast
She recruited fighting men
From Scotland and Ireland, a true pirate host

Targeting traders, and merchant men
She boarded their ships and demanded her toll
Those who resisted or tried to fight back
Tasted her steel or were held in her thrall

When tribute was paid they were free to go
Their safe passage was guaranteed
The pirate horde would flee to the shore
Disappearing in coves, her fleet would recede

Attacks were not limited to the sea
Grace would strike castles on the shore
O'Loughlin, O'Boyle and MacSweeney clans
Fell victim to Grace and her pirate war

Her career began and prospered
At the peak of Gaelic rule
A loving mother and wife
Yet a Pirate Queen so cruel!

Called to meet with England's Queen
She conducted herself well
They spoke in Latin, reached an accord
Then they bade farewell
On her return, Grace did learn
That the meeting was in vain
Her demands were never met
Mush to her disdain!

Gaelic rule was in decline
But Grace remained defiant
She assisted in rebellion
She would never be compliant
And always fought off raids
That came close to her lands
She fought a band from Galway
Killing their leader with her hands

She died a natural death
In the same year as England's Queen
Saxon rule increased
Of this Grace had foreseen
The Nine Years war was won
English rule was complete
But Grace-she will live on
She never knew defeat!