A Rally for Ireland

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(by Thomas Osborne Davis May, 1689)

Shout it out till it ring
From Beinn-Mor to Cape Cleir,
For our country and king,
And religion so dear,
Rally, men, rally!
Irishmen rally!
Gather round the dear flag, that, wet with our tears
And torn and bloody, lay hid for long years,
And now, once again, in its pride re-appears.
See! From the castle our green banner waves.
Bearing fit motto for uprising slaves –
For “Now or never!
Now and for ever!”
Bids you to battle for triumphs or graves –
Bids you burst on the Sacsanach knaves.
Rally, then rally!
Irishmen rally!
Shout “Now or never!
Now and for ever!”
Heed not their fury, however it raves;
Welcome their horsemen with pikes and with staves;
Close on their cannon, their bay’nets and glaives,
Down with their standard wherever it waves;
Fight to the last, and ye cannot be slaves!
Fight to the last, and ye cannot be slaves!

Gallant Sheldon is here,
And Hamilton too,
And Tirconaill so dear,
And MacCarthy so true.
And there are Frenchmen –
Skilful and staunch men –
De Rosen, Pontee, Pusigan and Boisseleau,
And gallant Lauzun is a-coming, you know,
With Bealdearg, the kinsman of great Owen Roe:
From Sionainn to Bann, and from Lifé to Laoi,
The country is rising for liberty,
Though your arms are rude,
If your courage be good,
As the traitor fled will the stranger flee,
At another Drom-mhor from “the Irishry”,
Arm, peasant and Lord!
Grasp musket and sword!
Grasp pike, staff, and scian!
Give your horses the rein!
March in the name of his Majesty –
Ulster and Munster unitedly –
Townsman and peasant, like waves of the sea –
Leinster and Connaught to victory –
Shoulder to shoulder for liberty!
Shoulder to shoulder for liberty!

Kirk, Schomberg and Churchill
Are coming – what then?
We’ll drive them and Dutch Will
To England again.

We can laugh at each threat,
For our parliament’s met –
De Courcy, O’Brien, MacDomhnaill, Le Poer,
O’Neill and St. Lawrence, and others go leor,
The choice of the land from Athlone to the shore
They’ll break the last link of the Sassanach chain –
They’ll give us the lands of our fathers again!
Then up ye! And fight
For your king and your rightm
Or ever toil on, and never complain,
Though they trample your roof tree, and rifle your fane.
Rally, then rally!
Irishmen, rally!
Fight “Now or never!
Now and for ever!”
Laws are in vain without swords to maintain
So, muster as fast as the fall of the rain:
Serried and rough as a field of ripe grain,
Stand by your flag upon mountain and plain:
Charge tilll yourselves or your foemen are slain!
Fight till yourselves or your foemen are slain!

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