Leo Alishan

(1820-1901 / Armenia)

The Exiles - Poem by Leo Alishan

ALAS, ye poor Armenians !
In undeserved distress
Ye wander forth to slavery,
In want and wretchedness.

A myriad woes ye suffered,
Nor left your own dear home ;
But now ye leave your fathers’ graves,
In distant lands to roam.

These waters sweet, these smiling fields,
Where cities fair are set,
To strangers ye abandon them,
But how can ye forget ?

Nay, while you live, remember;
Be to your country true :
Your children and descendants,
Bid them remember too.

The holy name of Ararat
And many a sacred fane,
Till the last judgment wakes the world,
Shall in their hearts remain.

Alas for thee, my country !
Alas for thee, for us !
I would that death had sealed mine eyes
Ere I beheld thee thus !

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Poem Submitted: Wednesday, September 22, 2010

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