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Anna Johnston MacManus

(1866-1902 / Ireland)

A New Year’s Song (1898)


What shall the year bring, fraught with omen,
What shall the core of its message be?
Tramp of battle, and bright swords flashing,
And the sunburst over you, Gramachree?

Say in what dawn shall our eyes behold it–
Swift, white sails on the western sea,
And the exiled clans of your love returning
To succour and save you, Gramachree!

Say shall the sound of their war-chant ringing,
And our answering chorus re-echoing free,
From the strong dark North to the South sweet-spoken,
Wake, from her dreaming, Gramachree!

Ah! not alone do the exiles call you,
Nor alone in our passionate pleading are we;
But voices, long stilled, on the winds are drifting
'Your day-star is rising, sad Gramachree!'

Hearken the shout of the Hundred Fighter!
At Brian's fierce thunder old sorrowings flee:
And Owen, and Hugh the Beloved, are bending
From Heaven to comfort you, Gramachree!

Lift your sad eyes to the hills, mavourneen,
Where true hearts yearn for the fray to be:
The gold dawn flushes your grey sky over,
God's sun will soon shine on you, Gramachree.

Submitted: Tuesday, October 05, 2010
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