Carolan knew that when MacCabe woke up he would repudiate the bet and say
that he lasted the longer unless Carolan could prove otherwise. So
Carolan called for a sack. William Eccles, a bystander, got one and MacCabe was put into
the sack up to his neck while still asleep. Carolan tied the sack
tight around MacCabe's neck and attached a sign which read Here lies in
a sack -- MacCabe upto his neck
and MacCabe slept until morning.
Then MacCabe began to stir and to stretch and found himself somewhat obstructed. He struggled harder and called on Carolan to extricate him from the dilemma he was in. Thereupon Carolan let him out and congratulated him on the loss of the wager. Naturally MacCabe was annoyed at the indignity he was put in and expressed himself with great vehemence. Carolan's poetic rejoinder follows: ...Donal O'Sullivan.
Fuiling do shacadh go socair,
A Chathaoir an tsodair Mhac Cába!
I dtús sdoirm ná cuir aonadh,
Is iomadh síon bhias lá Márta.
Má cuireadh tú isteach i sac i lár na sráide
Acht re neart aon ghaiscidhigh amháin
Take your sacking quietly,|
Charles trotter* MacCabe!
Do not be surprised at the onset of a storm,
A March day has much foul weather.
If you were put inside a sack in the middle of the street
But by the strength of a single champion
This poem of Carolan's was not the end of the affair, for it was followed by the scolding match between the two men, which we will consider in another poem. O'Sullivan vol 1 pg 72-4
* The word trotter here connotes that MacCabe walked with a slight limp,
sometimes called a gas lighters trot
Background music: "Carolan's Cap" likely a nightcap. The music for the sacking song is not presently available.
Donal O'Sullivan, Life and Times of an Irish Harper vol 1 pg 72-4
Courtesy of Jack and Vivian IrishPage.com 21 April 2004
Replay music: Carolan's Cap