At Saint Patrick's Purgatory(1954)
The poem is a translation of a text by an anonymous Irish monk who lived sometime between the 8th and 13th centuries. The English translation used by Barber is by Irish writer Seán Proinsias Ó Faoláin.
At Saint Patrick's Purgatory
Pity me on my pilgrimage to Loch Derg!
O King of the churches and the bells—
bewailing your sores and your wounds,
but not a tear can I squeeze from my eyes!
Not moisten an eye
after so much sin!
Pity me, O King! What shall I do
with a heart that seeks only its own ease?
O only begotten Son by whom all men were made,
who shunned not the death by three wounds,
pity me on my pilgrimage to Loch Derg
and I with a heart not softer than a stone!