The Spirit of the Nation/The Extermination

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"Dominus pupillum et viduam suscipiet."—Ps. 145.


When tyranny's pampered and purple-clad minions
Drive forth the lone widow and orphan to die,
Shall no angel of vengeance unfurl his red pinions,
And, grasping sharp thunderbolts, rush from on high?


"Pity! oh, pity!—A little while spare me,
My baby is sick—I am feeble and poor;
In the cold winter blast, from the hut if you tear me,
My lord, we must die on the desolate moor!"


'Tis vain—for the despot replies but with laughter,
While rudely his serfs thrust her forth on the wold;
Her cabin is blazing, from threshold to rafter,
And she crawls o'er the mountain, sick, weeping, and cold.


Her thinly-clad child on the stormy hill shivers—
The thunders are pealing dread anthems around—
Loud roar in their anger the tempest-lash'd rivers—
And the loosen'd rocks down with the wild torrent bound.


Vainly she tries in her bosom to cherish
Her sick infant boy, 'mid the horrors around,
Till, faint and despairing, she sees her babe perish—
Then lifeless she sinks on the snow-cover'd ground.


Tho' the children of Ammon, with trumpets and psalters,
To devils pour'd torrents of innocent gore,
Let them blush from deep hell at the far redder altars
Where the death-dealing tyrants of Ireland adore!


But for Erin's life-current, thro' long ages flowing,
Dark demons that pierce her, you yet shall atone;
Even now the volcano beneath you is glowing,
And the Moloch of tyranny reels on his throne.