She came as a pilgrim . But without sackcloth nor ashes .But a
pilgrim nonetheless she was -One seeking out in the last days of
her reign to seek an appeasement , a friendship with an Island
with which she felt a past of so much regret , and now in the
last days of her Realm , a deep necessity uncoil that umbilical
cord , and let the blood of nourishment enhance us both ;
neither as mother and her foetus, nor as two twins within a
greater uterus . But more as heart and vein and artery flowing in
a continuoum of necessity - as one being yet two peoples
She came in the late Spring sunshine in resplendent green. Not from mawkish paddywhakery but out of respect ; to say not Sorry for the past, but to ask has the time not finally arrived for this moment ,for us both to at peace at last . For her there would not come a chance again ; she saw with dimmed but hopeful eye to the final horizons of her reign that maybe , hopefully it could finally be so .And other legacies of her reign might also be appeased at home - that bond of body and soul together in the confluence of our genes - a Eucharist - a sacramental union of togetherness to tide us through the economic conflicts which assail each hearth , each cottage , each rolling hill .
In her address to the assembly in Dublin Castle she opened her speech , in Gaelic with the address;
A Uachtarain agus a Chairde ( Madam President and friends ) Frail , fragile - she continued in a speech much conversed , rehearsed , parsed and centrifuged down to each inflection -
And while we are bound to sad the memories of the past " we are not bound by them ."
As Royals don't do apologies she came closest by saying some things were done which we regret and some that twere better 'were not done at all'
There is little doubt that when the 85 year old Monarch came at last to this closest outpost of her country's former Empire , she and her 89 year old husband conquered Ireland all over again.
Gone was the knawing hangover of the years of oppression , suppression domination and subjugation. It is symbolic and historic. The warmth of the reception in Cork was reflected in its dignity as much as was the spontaneous exuberance of the crowds who were given access to greet her.
This is the history that is. The hand of history was upon her (Blair)..and Hope and History could Rhyme ( S. Heaney )
Yes some are still unrelenting in a retarded sense of constitutional state , and these were represented by thugs who came out to protest . One wonders if the irony in the fact that these fine soldiers of destiny were wearing the jerseys of English Soccer club teams as they protested and battled with our police ?
When she laid a wreath at the Garden of Remberance which is a place of veneration for all the Irish men and women fell in armed rebellion against the forces of the Crown .And in that that silence where only the gentle breeze unfurled the Irish Tricolour and the Union Jack - one could sense that in their long dieing sleep , the last exhalation and the final throb of their hearts that beat as one under the hallowed soil.
An Irish poem is inscribed there ;
"We Saw A Vision"
In the darkness of despair we saw a vision,
We lit the light of hope and it was not extinguished.
In the desert of discouragement we saw a vision.
We planted the tree of valour and it blossomed.
In the winter of bondage we saw a vision.
We melted the snow of lethargy and the river of resurrection flowed from it.
We sent our vision aswim like a swan on the river. The vision became a reality.
Winter became summer. Bondage became freedom and this we left to you as your inheritance.
O generations of freedom remember us, the generations of the vision.
The Queen has often been confused with direct British political rule to Ireland . In the amalgam of our intertwined histories we forget that she is by statute divorced from politics even though in their particular Constitutional Monarchy - an anachronism to all republicans - the Queen of England must ratify each new British Parliament , give final approval to their law , and is by the same token the Head if the Church in England .
This last position reflects a time when a former British Monarch choose to usurp the Papal decree and protest ,allowing him to marry for a second time . This was the birth of Protestantism and the anti papacy which began and has persisted since the Reformation. This was Her Majety's most inglorious relative . Henry VIII .the nemeses on Rome
After Henry the English throne would forever be in conflict with Rome .
Ireland has had an incestual relation with the Pope of Rome and Catholocisism. and has welcomed the Pope to our shores with the unbridled flamboyance - and the Holy Father took rapture in it , there is now has little left of its adulation of Rome or the successor of Peter .
We bid the Queen farewell and play the Irish Blessing on the brass stringed harps ,knowing she has conquered all Ireland . Again.
This timee more a friend than a monrch - but the reverse ( as Groucho Marks used to say ) - the reverse could also be true .
One thing we may benifit from all this is that while we will never sing 'God Save The Queen ' as an anthem , we need to dump the awful anthem we have currently .