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Author: Nollaig O'Hainle (Chris Hanley) Oceanside, CA 92054 ©2003

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Music: "Gwendel: "Aventures Celtiques"

Text Version


Irish Lament


How sad these strains, when air they fill,

As I stand and look, at yonder hill.

It's passion yet, evokes my pain,

A country, torn I saw it's lame.


A crop with blight bestows me here,

To sail on seas I held in fear.

My mother standing, waves her hand,

As I set sail, to a "Promised Land."


I'm leaving you, but I'll be back,

To bring the riches which, we lack.

"A Land of Hope," in search of needy,

Promise of gold, but I'm not greedy.


New York, a place where first I came,

In search of fortune, health, and fame;

Alas, no streets, said paved with gold,

My labors worth, to be bought, and sold;


From dawn till dusk, I toil away,

A pittance granted, for my pay.

My hands are tied; I can't go back,

Enslaved to those, for what I lack.


To those that hire and will deny,

A sign I read, "No Irish need Apply"

With callused hands, and back so sore,

I think of Ireland's craggy shore.


Through sweat and tears, a mournful cry,

Oh mother dear, before you die.

Let me provide, and ease your pain,

Or all my work will be in vain.


No more to see, my families smile,

Unless my God, provides the guile.

And once again to walk with pride,

Perhaps one day, I'll take a bride.


I know my offspring's, will be endearing,

For the land of my birth, a sound, on hearing.

With pride will fill, or call its name,

"Old Ireland" from which, once I came.


Now my life, it has departed,

From the goals on which I started.

I look back, with fond embrace,

And recall my dead old mother's face.


Soon she will reach and take my hand,

To lead me to, a new Promised Land.

No more to see the crop with blight,

In the Lords hand's I will rest this night.


© Nollaig 2003

The graphic view is Sibil Head, Dingle Ireland. 


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