Paedo or no? What is this Pearse poem about if not kissing wee boys?

JCSkinner

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We all know Padraig Pearse had pederastic tendencies, and that he fancied wee boys.
After all, he wrote the following poem in 1909, only a year after founding his own school for boys, St Enda's.
Personally, I believe that confliction over his desire for wee boys is one of the driving motivations that led Pearse to the effective suicide of the Rising.
But primarily, I'm opening this thread to ask if anyone can provide an innocent interpretation of the poem below, because I'm now utterly bored with frothing-mouthed Shinners frantically emailing me to deny that Pearse was a paedo.
If he's not a paedo, then you won't mind telling me what this is about, will you?

LITTLE LAD OF THE TRICKS

by Padraig Pearse.


Little lad of the tricks,
Full well I know
That you have been in mischief:
Confess your fault truly.

I forgive you, child
Of the soft red mouth:
I will not condemn anyone
For a sin not understood.

Raise your comely head
Till I kiss your mouth:
If either of us is the better of that
I am the better of it.

There is a fragrance in your kiss
That I have not found yet
In the kisses of women
Or in the honey of their bodies.

Lad of the grey eyes,
That flush in thy cheek
Would be white with dread of me
Could you read my secrets.

He who has my secrets
Is not fit to touch you:
Is not that a pitiful thing,
Little lad of the tricks ?
 


Toland

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buachailrua

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Poetry is open to interpretation. Maybe he was using it as a metaphor for something else? We'll never know!
Could he have been comparing the youthful child with his real love, Ireland??
 

Question R24U

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JCSkinner

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Poetry is open to interpretation. Maybe he was using it as a metaphor for something else? We'll never know!
Could he have been comparing the youthful child with his real love, Ireland??
Er, I don't think so:

Padraig Pearse sweating profusely said:
There is a fragrance in your kiss
That I have not found yet
In the kisses of women
Or in the honey of their bodies.
Not much about Ireland in that.
 

JCSkinner

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Wonderfully emotive language, but do you have any historical report of any complaint (or even British propaganda) that touched children inappropriately? Or is politics.ie now doing literature reviews?
Do you have an innocent interpretation for that poem? It's a simple question. If you do, I'm interested, if you don't, well, don't feel bad. Neither does anyone else.
 

swansandtyphus

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[ame=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=13pCHb62kvQ&feature=related]YouTube - Herbert the pervert - "I Know what boys Like"[/ame]
 

JCSkinner

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JC, there was a previous thread on this but I suspect you know that..
Nope. I wasn't aware.
When I made a passing reference to Pearse on a thread about the United Irishmen some weeks back, I got a large response from Republicans.
Not a one of them interested in backing the proposal to honour the vision of the United Irishmen, of course. That's a bit too inclusivist for them.
No, they only wanted to splutter about my calling Pearse a would-be pederast.
Well, I'm officially now going to delete any more mails on the subject from my inbox unread, as I've now opened a thread for them.
I'm keen to hear one of them put their case that Pearse didn't fancy riding wee boys. After all, despite loads of mails on the topic, not one was able to explain this poem except in terms of paedophilia.
 

Question R24U

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Do you have an innocent interpretation for that poem? It's a simple question. If you do, I'm interested, if you don't, well, don't feel bad. Neither does anyone else.
You can't even print the poem in the language which it was written.
I'm not sure you understand that poetry must be read in the context in which it was written.
Do your own literature research (there is a link above to a book which explains it)


You want my innocent explanation for the poem?
Answer: it is a poem.

As for allegory of children, look at this website for the number of poster who cite the proclaimation of "cherishing all the children of the Nation equally" solely in the context of those under the age of 18.
 

Aindriu

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I would argue that Pearse was almost certainly gay. Furthermore, IMHO, that poem definitely indicates a liking for young boys.
 

buachailrua

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BA (Hons) and PhD. What's yours?

I suppose I could write that I had the same as you but then Id be lying as I only have a B in HL Leaving Cert in it.. I dont believe you though.
I reckon you'd have a more open mind than a closed anti-Padraig Pearse opinionated one if you really had those qualifications.!
 

JCSkinner

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I suppose I could write that I had the same as you but then Id be lying as I only have a B in HL Leaving Cert in it.. I dont believe you though.
I reckon you'd have a more open mind than a closed anti-Padraig Pearse opinionated one if you really had those qualifications.!
Since I'm hardly going to scan my degrees for you just to prove my qualifications for some anonymous internet bod, perhaps we can all put the qualifications away and accept that poetry interpretation is open to all.
I couldn't have a more open mind. I am entirely, breathlessly waiting, open-minded, for ANY interpretation of this poem which plausibly suggests something other than a romantic-sexual desire for young boys.
Do you have such an interpretation?
 

seabhac siulach

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We all know Padraig Pearse had pederastic tendencies, and that he fancied wee boys.
After all, he wrote the following poem in 1909, only a year after founding his own school for boys, St Enda's.
Personally, I believe that confliction over his desire for wee boys is one of the driving motivations that led Pearse to the effective suicide of the Rising.
But primarily, I'm opening this thread to ask if anyone can provide an innocent interpretation of the poem below, because I'm now utterly bored with frothing-mouthed Shinners frantically emailing me to deny that Pearse was a paedo.
If he's not a paedo, then you won't mind telling me what this is about, will you?
When Pearse wrote that poem, he showed it to Thomas McDonagh and Joseph Mary Plunkett. (From Wikipedia) When they explained to him the (unsavoury) construction which might be placed on it, Pearse was both "bewildered and hurt." Unless the man was a fool (which he clearly was not), it is very unlikely he would have written (and published! This was not a private poem, after all) a poem about kissing a boy if he at all considered that it meant what modern detractors seem to suggest. It is much more likely that Pearse was an innocent (in matters of sex) and his emotions expressed in the poem were similarly innocent and, therefore, well meaning (believe it or not!). Sometimes a kiss perhaps just means a kiss...

It is interesting that some attempt to taint Pearse with these allegations, considering that they are completely immaterial to the central actions of his life (his fight for Irish/Gaelic freedom), and are unsubstantiated. I remember, a fair few years back, Pearse was also accused of being a homosexual (as a slur) before this became politically incorrect. Now, the attacks have changed to accusing him of 'paedophilia' (with no proof). This is posthumous blackening of a man's name, with no proof save for a single poem, with the various interpretations that could be put on it. [No hint, not even a hint, of anything untoward has ever been heard from the boys who attended St. Enda's. After all these years surely some evidence would have appeared, if only hearsay; but there is nothing.].

We (you) are judging a man who put his life on the line for his country, who had a messianic, heroic drive to free Ireland, to make it Gaelic once again. This was an exceptional man and to judge him, his actions, on the level you wish to bring him is absurd. Men like Pearse would hardly sacrifice themselves for their country, as he did, if their motivations were so base as suggested. A man like that, a 'paedophile', would surely care little for higher motivations, if concerned only for carnal pleasure with a child. Hardly the type who sacrifices themselves to awaken national sentiment, surely?
Or must all be dragged down, all brought down to the level of those who wish to blacken the name of one of our true heroes (in all the meanings of that word)?

I believe these attacks on Pearse have nothing whatsoever to do with the man himself and are likely merely an attempt to attack what Pearse stood for, using Pearse as a proxy. It is shameful stuff. Particularly when it is carried out posthumously...a posthumous character assassination 93 years after the man's death. Pathetic.

I would wish to point out that Pearse was also involved in setting up St. Ita's school for girls, a school with similar aims to St. Enda's, which would somewhat take away one of the 'planks' of the OP's 'argument' (if one can charitably call it an argument)...
 

buachailrua

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There is a fragrance in your kiss
That I have not found yet
In the kisses of women
Or in the honey of their bodies.

My interpretation,

The fight for Irish freedom excites me more than the chase in pursuit of a woman??
 


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