Joanna Baillie (1762-1851 / Scotland)
Song written At Mr. Thomson’s Request
AS A KIND OF INTRODUCTION
TO HIS IRISH MELODIES.
SWEET power of song! that canst impart
To lowland swain or mountaineer
A gladness thrilling through the heart,
A joy so tender and so dear!
Sweet power! that on a foreign strand
Canst the rough soldier's bosom move
With feelings of his native land,
As gentle as an infant's love!
Sweet power! that makest youthful heads,
With thistle, leek or shamrock crowned,
Nod proudly as the carol sheds
Its spirit through the social round!
Sweet power! that cheerest the daily toil
Of cottage maid or beldame poor,
The ploughman on the furrowed soil,
Or herd-boy on the lonely moor:
Or he by bards the Shepherd hight,
Who mourns his maiden's broken tie,
Till the sweet plaint, in woe's despite,
Hath made a bliss of agony:
Sweet power of song! thanks flow to thee
From every kind and gentle breast!
Let Erin's--Cambria's minstrels be
With Burns's tuneful spirit blest!
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