Poem on the Observance of Sunday
Author: J. G. OKeeffe
An electronic edition
1. Observe ye dear Gods Law of Sunday; watch, beware,
attend! Christ the Lord has surely decreed that Sunday should
not be transgressed.
2. Transgression of Sunday of swift God near or afar, abroad
or at home - wanton deed - is in despite of the Lord.
3. The Lord, chief of every element, who decreed the high
mysteries of stars (?), King of Heaven, King of the firm earth
and mighty King of hell.
4. It is He who has shaped the world without fear, without
terror; rightly did He give six days to Sunday for its service.
5. These were the six days properly set forth; let me mention
them in a stave so that we may arrive at their ancient names.
6. Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday, Friday and
Saturday side by side . . .
7. Why do we hold Sunday above every [other] perfect
day? Why should six of them be ever serving the one day?
8. This is why it is thus for Sunday, without deceit; thereon
God made at once the Kingly dwelling and the angels of
9. On Sunday he made the mass and the sand of heavy-grey
earth, wherein were strong mighty fire and water and air.
10. On Sunday the King created beauteous Adam, son of
the Living God; it is from him that all the people of the yellow-visaged
earth have sprung.
11. On Sunday, in good sooth, the Flood first ebbed; on
Sunday was born the prince, the patriarch Abraham.
12. On Sunday the Law was rightly given to good Moses;
on Sunday - great was its occasion - kingship was given to
13. On Sunday choice was given to Solomon, the rich and
prosperous, when among the godly people of the world he took
wisdom as his noble choice.
14. On Sunday Jonah came out of the whales belly; on
Sunday - great was the glory - Babylon was freed.
15. On Sunday Mary was born, let each one tell it to
another; on Sunday Mary gave birth to the Son Christ . . .
16. On Sunday was the baptism of chaste Christ in the
beautiful Jordan and His Resurrection unfalteringly; He
vanquished the devil, He harrowed hell.
17. On Sunday of Little Easter with renown Christ
appeared to His Apostles; on Sunday - the greater was its
right - He made each preaching.
18. On Sunday, without heavy gloom, the Spirit of God in
form of fire [descended] on the Apostles without sorrow
- on Pentecost Sunday.
19. Forthwith He created therein the Heavenly Household
- on Sunday - nine saintly grades of Heaven all beautiful and
20. On Sunday will come the judgment, the dread of which
is on all; on Sunday radiant Christ will come to judge the hosts
21. On Gods Sunday - my joy! - the saints will be borne
to holy Heaven, and on Sunday of the swift God the sinners
will be borne into eternal torment.
22. Ordain the Law of Sunday accordingly for those reasons
of old; O folk of the world, hold it sacred for perfect fair
23. A venemous serpent whom none dares, if it be meddled
with, it will be grievous; on Sunday give it a kiss, and it does
thee no harm.
24. A strange fish which searches the sea named the swift
Leviathan; on Sunday, let it be on thy mind, it moves not
out of one place.
25. A great miracle is that of the lions; fighting neither at
home nor abroad wherever they go on Sunday.
26. Strange sense is spoken thereon; a wood full of the
sheen of beautiful trees, six days they are standing up, on
Sunday they are ever lying down.
27. Apple-trees of the land Beersheba, apples on them at
every season; on Sunday people go to steal them, and there
is not a single apple on them.
© 2006 Thesaurus Linguae Hibernicae