Poems eBook

Denis Florence MacCarthy
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 281 pages of information about Poems.

I’m with him in that wholesome clime—­
  That fruitful soil, that verdurous sod—­
Where hearts unstained by vulgar crime
  Have still a simple faith in God: 
Hearts that in pleasure and in pain,
  The more they’re trod rebound the more,
Like thee, when wet with heaven’s own rain,
  O shamrock of the Irish shore!

Memorial of my native land,
  True emblem of my land and race—­
Thy small and tender leaves expand
  But only in thy native place. 
Thou needest for thyself and seed
  Soft dews around, kind sunshine o’er;
Transplanted thou’rt the merest weed,
  O shamrock of the Irish shore.

Here on the tawny fields of France,
  Or in the rank, red English clay,
Thou showest a stronger form perchance;
  A bolder front thou mayest display,
More able to resist the scythe
  That cut so keen, so sharp before;
But then thou art no more the blithe
  Bright shamrock of the Irish shore!

Ah, me! to think—­thy scorns, thy slights,
  Thy trampled tears, thy nameless grave
On Fredericksburg’s ensanguined heights,
  Or by Potomac’s purpled wave! 
Ah, me! to think that power malign
  Thus turns thy sweet green sap to gore,
And what calm rapture might be thine,
  Sweet shamrock of the Irish shore!

Struggling, and yet for strife unmeet,
  True type of trustful love thou art;
Thou liest the whole year at my feet,
  To live but one day at my heart. 
One day of festal pride to lie
  Upon the loved one’s heart—­what more? 
Upon the loved one’s heart to die,
  O shamrock of the Irish shore!

And shall I not return thy love? 
  And shalt thou not, as thou shouldst, be
Placed on thy son’s proud heart above
  The red rose or the fleur-de-lis? 
Yes, from these heights the waters beat,
  I vow to press thy cheek once more,
And lie for ever at thy feet,
  O shamrock of the Irish shore!

Boulogne-sur-Mer, March 17, 1865.


[Suggested by seeing for the first time fire-flies in the myrtle hedges at Spezzia.]

By many a soft Ligurian bay
  The myrtles glisten green and bright,
Gleam with their flowers of snow by day,
  And glow with fire-flies through the night,
And yet, despite the cold and heat,
Are ever fresh, and pure, and sweet.

There is an island in the West,
  Where living myrtles bloom and blow,
Hearts where the fire-fly Love my rest
  Within a paradise of snow—­
Which yet, despite the cold and heat,
Are ever fresh, and pure, and sweet.

Deep in that gentle breast of thine—­
  Like fire and snow within the pearl—­
Let purity and love combine,
  O warm, pure-hearted Irish girl! 
And in the cold and in the heat
Be ever fresh, and pure, and sweet.

Thy bosom bears as pure a snow
  As e’er Italia’s bowers can boast,
And though no fire-fly lends its glow—­
  As on the soft Ligurian coast—­
’Tis warmed by an internal heat
Which ever keeps it pure and sweet.

Project Gutenberg
Poems from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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