Thrice, at the huts of Fontenoy, the English column failed,
And twice the lines of Saint Antoine the Dutch in vain assailed;
For town and slope were filled with fort and flanking battery,
And well they swept the English ranks and Dutch auxiliary.
Bright red is the sun on the waves of Lough Sheelin,
A cool, gentle breeze from the mountain is stealing,
While fair round its islets the small ripples play,
But fairer than all is the Flower of Finae.
Full often when our fathers saw the Red above the Green,
They rose in rude but fierce array, with sabre, pike and scian,
And over many a noble town, and many a field of dead,
They proudly set the Irish Green above the English Red.
Shall they bury me in the deep,
Where wind-forgetting waters sleep?
Shall they dig a grave for me,
Under the green-wood tree?
Or on the wild heath,
Where the wilder breath
Of the storm doth blow?
Oh, no! oh, no!
She is a rich and rare land;
Oh! she's a fresh and fair land;
She is a dear and rare land
This native land of mine.
'Did they dare, did they dare, to slay Eoghan Ruadh O'Neill? '
'Yes, they slew with poison him they feared to meet with steel.'
'May God wither up their hearts! May their blood cease to flow!
May they walk in living death, who poisoned Eoghan Ruadh! '
When boyhood's fire was in my blood
I read of ancient freemen
For Greece and Rome who bravely stood,
THREE HUNDRED MEN AND THREE MEN.
The Geraldines! The Geraldines! - 'tis full a thousand years
Since, 'mid the Tuscan vineyards, bright flashed their battle-spears;
When Capet seized the crown of France, their iron shields were known,
And their sabre dint struck terror on the banks of the Garonne;
The tribune's tongue and poet's pen
May sow the seed in prostrate men;
But 'tis the soldier's sword alone
Can reap the crop so bravely sown!