By Patrick Tunney
“Songs and Ballads from the Vales of Mayo”
I dreamt last night I was in Mace
In the midst of revelations,
That Ireland had won her place,
Amongst the world’s nations.
I thought I heard a stern command
Saying “Go! Clear out invader.
We’ve burst your chains in Ireland,
No more will you degrade her,”
All Banba’s sons had rallied forth
Undaunted ‘neath the banner,
The East and West, the South and North,
From the placid Boyne to Anner,
From the distant hills of Donegal,
The peaks of Connemara,
From the heathery slopes of wild Imaal
To the shores of fair Kinvara.
From the fertile plains of Royal Meath
With Tara in its glory,
To the rugged heights of Oulart’s heath
And the blood-stained fields of Gorey,
From every corner of Mayo
Undaunted braves were thronging
Saying “We helped to oust the foe,
For Freedom’s rays we’re longing”
There the gallant men of Ballinalee
Knocklong and Ballybrian
To chant a hymn of liberty
With Connacht’s clans were vying.
I thought the boys of famed Tralee
Macroom and Tipperary
Sang “Thomond is from thraldom free
By the sons of Ballingeary.”
I thought the boys of Garryowen
Were led by Denis Lacey
To unveil the epitaph of Tone,
MacBride and brave Seán Treacy.
I saw great warriors from Belfast,
From Larne, Down and Derry
A-rallying as the trumpet’s blast
All ancient feuds to bury.
The crowd was swelling all the while
Loved Banba ceased all pining
As the shadows of her silvery steel
‘Gainst an azure sky was shining.
A Republic was proclaimed anew,
From Gaelic they were speaking,
In silence all knelt on the dew
To convert the slave and weakling,
Redeemed, and free from foreign yoke
I blest the land that bore me
But from my slumber I awoke
As a Tommy shouted o’er me…