Written on hoard the S.S. Baltic, almost in sight of the Irish coast.
Oh, who shall be sad when the cliffs of green Erin
Arise from the ocean wave glad on our eyes?
Should there start in that rapturous moment a tear in
Our vision, or sob from our bosom arise,
These shall not of sorrow
Be signals: the morrow
Our souls in an ocean of bliss shall baptise.
How sad the leave-taking was, when we were severed,
What seas have long sundered. What years have rolled by
Since we said, “Banachth lath,” while in vain we endeavoured
By laughter to give to hearts breaking the lie.
How oft have we thought on
Friends never forgotten,
For joy we to meet them are ready to die.
Auld Scotia, thy heather and heath shall be trodden
Once more by thy sons so long severed from thee;
Thy fields by our forefathers’ blood have been sodden,
Who fought and who fell that their homes should be free.
And back, if not bettered,
We come, still unfettered;
Free men and free women determined to be.
Dear England, though distant from thee we have wandered,
Thy loveliness still without rival remains.
To thee, where with lavish hand nature has squandered
Her gifts, we are bound with unbreakable chains;
For distance can never
Thy sons from thee sever,
As long as the body the spirit retains.
But land of my faith, far eclipsing these Islands,
Where never expandeth the darkness her wing;
Not emerald lowlands, nor purple-browed highlands.
Such infinite joy to the bosom can bring,
As where from the glory
Grim Golgotha’s story
And Jesu’s great love His blood-ransomed shall ring.