A Book of Irish Verse by W. B. Yeats

By W. B. Yeats

In 1895 the thirty-year-old W.B. Yeats, already tested as one in every of Ireland's prime poets and folklorists, released this extraordinary choice of Irish verse as a part of his crusade to set up a practice of Irish poetry healthy for the sunrise of a brand new age in Ireland's background. This Routledge Classics variation, whole with a particularly commissioned creation via acclaimed author and critic John Banville, is key examining for all who get pleasure from strong literature.

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John Banim 17 18 james clarence mangan DARK ROSALEEN From the Irish O my Dark Rosaleen, Do not sigh, do not weep! The priests are on the ocean green. They march along the deep. There’s wine from the royal Pope, Upon the ocean green; And Spanish ale shall give you hope, My Dark Rosaleen! My own Rosaleen! Shall glad your heart, shall give you hope, Shall give you health, and help, and hope, My Dark Rosaleen! Over hills, and through dales, Have I roamed for your sake; All yesterday I sailed with sails On river and on lake, The Erne, at its highest flood, I dashed across unseen, For there was lightning in my blood, My Dark Rosaleen!

How would the troops of Murbach mourn If on the Curlew Mountains’ day, Which England rued, Some Saxon hand had left them lorn, By shedding there, amid the fray, Their prince’s blood! 25 26 james clarence mangan Red would have been our warriors’ eyes Had Roderick found on Sligo field A gory grave, No Northern Chief would soon arise, So sage to guide, so strong to shield, So swift to save. Long would Leith-Cuinn have wept if Hugh Had met the death he oft had dealt Among the foe; But, had our Roderick fallen too, All Erin must, alas!

Scully! thou false one, You basely betrayed him, In his strong hour of need, When thy right hand should aid him; He fed thee—he clad thee— You had all could delight thee: You left him—you sold him— May Heaven requite thee! Scully! may all kinds Of evil attend thee! On thy dark road of life May no kind one befriend thee! May fevers long burn thee, And agues long freeze thee! May the strong hand of God In His red anger seize thee! Had he died calmly, I would not deplore him; Or if the wild strife Of the sea-war closed o’er him: But with ropes round his white limbs Through ocean to trail him, Like a fish after slaughter— ’Tis therefore I wail him.

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