The Exile of Erin by Thomas Campbell

THOMAS CAMPBELL (1777-1844).

There came to the beach a poor Exile of Erin,
The dew on his thin robe was heavy and chill ;
For his country he sighed, when at twilight repairing
To wander alone by the wind beaten hill ;
But the day-star attracted his eyes’ sad devotion,
For it rose o’er his own native isle of the ocean,
Where once in the fire of his youthful emotion,
He sang the bold anthem of Erin go bragh.

Sad is my fate, said the heart-broken stranger;
The wild deer and wolf to a covert can flee
But I have no refuge from famine and danger,
A home and a country remain not to me.
Never again in the green sunny bowers,
Where my forefathers liv’d shall I spend the sweet hours,
Or cover my harp with the wild-woven flowers,
And strike to the numbers of Erin go bragh.

Erin, my country, tho’ sad and forsaken,
In dreams I revisit thy sea-beaten shore,
But, alas! in a far foreign land I awaken,
And sigh for the friends who can meet me no more.
Oh cruel fate! wilt thou never replace me
In a mansion of peace-where no perils can chase me?
Never again shall my brothers embrace me?
They died to defend me, or lived to deplore!

Where is my cabin door, fast by the wild wood?
Sisters and sire, did you weep for its fall?
Where is the mother that looked on my childhood?
Where is the bosom-friend, dearer than all?
Oh! my sad heart! long abandoned by pleasure,
Why did it dote on a fast-fading treasure.
Tears, like the raindrops, may fall without measure,
But rapture and beauty they cannot recall.

Yet, all its sad recollections suppressing,
One dying wish my lone bosom can draw;
Erin, an exile bequeaths thee his blessing!
Land of my forefathers-Erin go bragh!
Buried and cold, when my heart stills her motion,
Green be thy nelds-aweetest isle or the ocean,
And thy harp-striking bards sing aloud with devotion.
Erin, ma vourneen! Erin go bragh!
Ireland, my darling! Ireland for ever!