bean sidhe

Faeries, Elves, and Other Kin

December, 2008

Faeries, Elves, and Other Kin: The Woman of Peace and the Spirit of the Air (Bean sidhe (Banshee)

Announcing mortal’s deaths with her keening cries

Piercing throughout the night rising and falling like the oceans waves

White Lady of Sorrow spirit of the air

Mourning and forewarning the ancient Celts and their decedents with her unearthly cries

Woman of peace, her voice blending in with the mournful cries of loved ones left behind

The Faery woman contrasts against the nights black skies

Eyes red from crying, her face pale

Cloaked in a raiment of grayish-white clinging to her tall slender frame

Her hair of silver and gray streaming down to the ground

Yet in all her mourning she is graced with a mode peace

Unseen she attends the rites of the beloved deceased

Where ever the old Irish families have gone across oceans and land

She follows her mortal family never forgetting her ties of blood to man.

~ Michele Burke (2008).

Whatever the Banshees origins, in one of three different guises she appears: a raddled old hag, a young woman, or a stately matron. It is in these guises that the triple aspects of the Celtic goddess of death and war, i.e. Macha, Badhbh, and Mor-Rioghain.) She is usually seen wearing either a winding sheet or grave robe of the unshriven dead, or a grey hooded cloak The Scottish counterpart of th banshee may also emerge as a washer-woman, and is apparently seen “washing the blood stained clothes of those who are about to die. In this guise she is known as the bean-nighe (washing woman)” (Hidden Ireland, n.d.).

Coming In December:

Water-Faeries:  providers of food, nourishes of crops, and takers of lives.

Bibliography and works cited:

Hidden Ireland, (n.d.). The Banshee. Retrieved November 24, 2008, from