The very short, 100-year-old Prayer to Saint Michael was a part of the Catholic Mass up till the 1960s. The longer, 1000-year-old Saint Patrick's Breastplate has not been a part of formal liturgy. Both represent a fighting spirit while asking for divine protection against very particular problems of evil and its many threats against human life. With short introductions.
Why does a song become a favorite oldie, even across generations? The problems of heart versus head versus hormones have been fodder for songs even older than one's parents and grandparents. These three spoken ballads, originating in the British Isles but well-traveled into American Appalachia, and recorded even by some of today's musicians, tell tales of careless love and heroism and the real (or satirical) effects of an individual's words and actions and willfulness.