THERE was a time in Europe long ago
When no man died for freedom anywhere,
But England’s lion leaping from its lair
Laid hands on the oppressor! it was so
While England could a great Republic show.
Witness the men of Piedmont, chiefest care
Of Cromwell, when with impotent despair
The Pontiff in his painted portico
Trembled before our stern ambassadors.
How comes it then that from such high estate
We have thus fallen, save that Luxury
With barren merchandise piles up the gate
Where nobler thoughts and deeds should enter by:
Else might we still be Milton’s heritors.
*I know, I know… it’s a poem less about Ireland and more about the United Kingdom. Okay, granted — it’s all about England and its fall from dynastic grace but it sure seems applicable to today’s current United Empire, no?
‘I am of Ireland, And the Holy Land of Ireland, And time runs on,’ cried she. ‘Come out of charity, Come dance with me in Ireland.’
One man, one man alone In that outlandish gear, One solitary man Of all that rambled there Had turned his stately head. That is a long way off, And time runs on,’ he said, ‘And the night grows rough.’
‘I am of Ireland, And the Holy Land of Ireland, And time runs on,’ cried she. ‘Come out of charity And dance with me in Ireland.’
‘The fiddlers are all thumbs, Or the fiddle-string accursed, The drums and the kettledrums And the trumpets all are burst, And the trombone,’ cried he, ‘The trumpet and trombone,’ And cocked a malicious eye, ‘But time runs on, runs on.’
I am of Ireland, And the Holy Land of Ireland, And time runs on,’ cried she. “Come out of charity And dance with me in Ireland.’