Prayer to Manannan
by Emma G.
Cleanse us of our blindness,
Oh Great God of the Sea,
Son of Lir, Magician,
Fierce in Your power.
Cleanse us of our apathy,
Wise and Far-Seeing Sovereign,
that we may look with clear eyes
on those things in our world
that make our hearts bleed,
and fury pound in our ears,
and stand up and say ‘no more.’
May we have the courage
to draw lines in the sand,
with our words, with our work,
with our very bodies, warriors all,
forcing change by our commitment,
until the poison of hatred
is washed away
like sand in an ebbing tide
unmade by our work.
Aid us in this battle,
Manannan we pray.
The son of Lir has ridden the waves
for longer than mankind has memory for;
He does not need us, we who dump garbage from our land
and pull oil up from the sea bed to foul the waters,
who kill his subjects in the millions, warm the waters
so that nothing may live there:
not manta, not coral
not sea lion, not sea-snake,
not crab or shrimp or lobster,
not octopus nor squid, not seahorse,
not oyster or clam, not cuttlefish,
and not even the lowliest of fans.
We devour the creatures that come from it:
tuna and cod, mackerel and flounder, sea bass and snapper,
so rabidly that some species near extinction.
We murder the whale and the dolphin and the shark,
by negligence, in malice, in greed, from fear.
We murder Manannan’s water-going children,
and we do so without the least concern
for what will take their place.
Yet He allows us to swim these waters,
sail our ships over them,
and play in their waves anyway,
even though we make no more than
the most superficial pretense
of cleaning up our mistakes.
That will not stand perpetually.
Manannan is a patient god,
but He will not be patient forever.
Manannan is a kindly god,
but He will not be kindly forever.
Manannan is a generous god,
but He will not be generous forever.
Manannan is a gentle god,
but He will not be gentle forever.
Manannan is a forgiving god…
but He will not forgive us forever.
(by J. Lawrence)
by J. Lawrence
The sea is never silent.
Each hiss of surf over sand,
each booming breaker,
each splash of wave against wood,
these are the voice of Manannan,
and these are Manannan’s song.
Storm-surge; scything winds.
The splash and crash of pounding water;
this, the drums that punctuate
the most magnificent of symphonies.
The ocean is a masterpiece,
the cream of whitecaps contrasted
with the deep blue-green of the shadowy depths,
the sparkle of luminescent plankton
floating atop the swells:
He paints in foam and billows,
a landscape that has never been surpassed.
Whale and seal, shark and ray,
dolphin and eel and albatross;
only some of the many citizens and subjects
that call him King and lord.
Lord of the Blessed Isles, Son of the sea,
who rides the white-maned foam-horse Aonbharr,
we thank You for sharing your beautiful world with us,
marvel at its colors and its music, delight in its many occupants,
and laugh with gratitude and joy each time
You allow us to return there.
Perhaps we should do a better job of taking care of it.
Protection Prayer for Fishermen
Oh great Mannanán mac Lir,
Son of the Sea,
God who controls the weather, wind, and waves,
Please protect the men and women who fish Your waters,
Please help them bring home full nets and light hearts.
I’ve heard it said that seafaring people truly believe in the Divine,
For they have survived stormy waters and fierce winds,
They know firsthand how their lives can be extinguished so easily.
It is Your right, crafty Trickster, to create tumultuous waters and to summon mists,
I would never, ever ask You to change Your ways,
I am only humbly asking you to protect the fishermen,
They love you Mannanán mac Lir,
So, please guide them and look after them.
In particular, please look after J., a friend of a friend of mine.
Please make sure he always returns safely to his loving family,
P., his wife, who is a healer and believes in the healing power of Your seaweed,
K. his teenage daughter, who sings like a bard,
And dear sweet little H, with skin the colour of cream and hair the colour of a sunset,
I’m sure the Fey would steal little H. away if they could.
Hail to you great Mannanán mac Lir! May you always be praised!
Rider of the Waves,
Son of the Sea,
Fierce Teacher of Wisdom
I hail You.
Just and fair Ruler,
Sovereign of Your people,
I pay You homage.
Guardian of the Blessed Isles,
Foster Father of heroes,
Ever victorious and strong,
I make this prayer to You.
May it be pleasing.
Hail, son of Lir, son of the sea!
Hail, lord of Man and of Emhain Abhlach!
Hail, Manannan, son of Lir, lord of the sea,
you who welcomed the Tribes of Danu
and appointed them their places
in the Otherworld, your world.
The coming of the Sons of Mil
did not drive you away;
you protected the gods and made peace,
even as you made peace between Fand
and Cu Chulainn, between your wife and yourself.
Manannan, make peace for us;
make peace in your land.
May your image be raised again
and never be disturbed.
May all the dwellers in Eire know
that they are protected by your grace.
May all the dwellers on Earth see
that the world itself is but a larger island,
spinning in the sea of space.
May Isa bless those who honor you
and may you bless those who honor Isa,
who honor him with wisdom, compassion,
and right deeds and not with evil judgments.
Manannan, son of Lir,
guardian of great wisdom and magic,
guardian of the fragile islands
where we human beings thrive,
may we always honor you, and you
always be kind to us.
by J. Lawrence
I have never walked along the strands of Niarbyl Bay,
never strolled the streets of Douglas or Peel,
nor will I, I imagine, be lucky enough
to dip my toes in the water off Port Erin.
No matter; I feel the debt borne by
all who live there, all who call Your island home;
as they do, so shall I do;
there are rushes aplenty where I live.
At Midsummer, I shall go to the lake,
walk barefoot where I may, a strong knife in hand,
and cut bundles of the irises and reeds that grow there,
where geese make their nests,
and the rails and coots fly,
golden as the summer sun when rent is due.
High I will pile them, singing Your praises,
indifferent to the stones underfoot,
or the scratches that might bloom on my arms
as I carry Your tithe to You.
The ancestors whose name I bear
once lived on the Emerald Isle,
and perhaps certain of them visited Your isle
in centuries long past; this, then, I pray You
let me give You, in thanks for what blessings
You might have shown them,
and for any such blessings You might also
have granted one small, poor descendant
of my elder kin, who feels the call to that place
that has never yet been home, most keenly,
for, should the chance ever arise that I have
the opportunity to go there, to live there,
I do not forget that, before one moves into a new home,
first month’s rent is also due.
For today, here are links to some images of Manannan — all of them very different. If any of you have others that you’d like to share, feel free to do so in the comments sections.
I have always liked Thalia Took’s artwork. Her Dionysos is lush and sensual and I find her Manannan equally compelling.
This one is really interesting.
There are quite a number of images of Him here.
This one is rather cool — lots of knot work.
This one is more Victorian and illustrative, and there’s a page about Him too here.
He looks pretty fierce here.
Paul Borda did a plaque of Manannan here.
This is an interesting and unusual representation of him.
And finally, this very old fashioned one came up in a common domain search. He’s being all bad-ass here.