17 March 2006

Erin's Green Shore

One evening of late as I rambled
On the banks of a clear purling stream,
I sat down on a bed of primroses
And I gently fell into a dream.
I dreamed I beheld a fair female,
Her equal I had ne'er seen before,
And she sighed for the wrongs of her country
As she strayed along Erin's Green Shore.

I went to her and I quickly addressed her:
Fair maid, will you tell me your name
And why through this wild wooded country
In the midst of these dangers you came?
I'm a daughter of Daniel O'Connell
And from England I have lately come o'er,
I have come to awaken my brethren
Who slumber on Erin's Green Shore.

Her eyes were like two sparkling diamonds
Or the stars of a bright frosty night,
Her cheeks were like two blooming roses,
And her teeth of the ivory so white.
She resembled the Goddess of Freedom
And green was the mantle she wore
Bound 'round with the shamrock and roses
As she strayed along Erin's Green Shore.

In transports of joy I awoke then,
And found I had been in a dream,
For this beautiful damsel had fled me,
And I longed for to slumber again.
May the heavens above be her guardian,
For I know I shall see her no more,
May the sunbeams of glory shine o'er he
As she strays along Erin's Green Shore.

The book from which I obtained this version of the lyrics to this song notes that this poem belongs to the aisling (vision) genre, in which Ireland is personified as an oppressed woman who appears in a dream seeking help from her sons or brothers who "slumber" in slavery.

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