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THE IRISH DEAD

ON FREDERICKSBURG HEIGHTS

 

 

Softly let thy footprints fall,

Upon this holy ground,

In reverence deep,

For those who sleep,

Beneath each lowly mound

 

Here hath many a noble son,

Of trodden mother land,

Whose joy thro' life,

Was hope of strife.

For their love of native land.

 

They came from Carlow's fertile plains,

And Wexford's woody vales,

From Innisbowen,

And green Tyrone,

And Wicklow's hills and dales.

 

They came to seek amid the free,

Homes to reward their toil,

In which to see

That liberty

Unknown on Erin's soil.

 

And well they loved the chosen land;

When menaced was her might,

Each grsteful heart

A willing part

Took in her cause to fight.

 

And her they lie in unblessed earth,

No kindred eye to weep,

Far, far away,

From the abbey's grey.

Where the sires and grandsires sleep.

 

Oh! Many a matron, many a maid,

Mourn in their native isle,

For the dear ones here,

Who no more shall cheer

Their hearts by their gladsome smile.

 

In many an ancient chapel there,

Nestled on the green hill side,

Will the good priest pray,

On the Sabbath day,

For his boys who in battle died.

 

Let us offer too, our orisons,

For each of the mayyr band,

Who nobly gave

Their lives to save

The might of their adopted land.

 

Kate M. Boylan

Jersey City, New Jersey

St. Patrick's Day, March 17, 1863

 

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