History poems/ page 6 of 51 /
Returned from that excursion, soon I bade
Farewell for ever to the sheltered seats
Of gowned students, quitted hall and bower,
And every comfort of that privileged ground,
Well pleased to pitch a vagrant tent among
The unfenced regions of society.
At thirteen she was all that Heaven could send,
My nurse, my faithful clerk, my lively friend;
Last at my pillow when I sunk to sleep,
First on my threshold soon as day could peep:
I heard her happy to her heart's desire,
With clanking pattens, and a roaring fire.
Cities burn behind us; the lake glitters.
A tall loudspeaker is announcing prizes;
Another, by the lake, the times of cruises.
Childhood, once vast with terrors and surprises,
Is fading to a landscape deep with distance
And always the sad piano in the distance,
Meanwhile the hardy Dutchmen came,as ancient charts attest,
Hartog, and Nuyts, and Carpenter, and Tasman, and the rest,
But found not forests rich in spice, nor market for their wares,
Nor servile tribes to toil oertasked mid pestilential airs,
And deemed it scarce worth while to claim so poor a continent,
But with their slumberous tropic isles thenceforward were content.
Of chance or change O let not man complain,
Else shall he never never cease to wail:
For, from the imperial dome, to where the swain
Long have I loved the beauty of thy streets,
Fair Dublin: long, with unavailing vows,