Thomas Osborne Davis ( )

When South Winds Blow

WHY sits the gentle maiden there,
  While surfing billows splash around?
Why doth she southwards wildly stare,
  And sing, with such a fearful sound,	
The Wild Geese 1 fly where others walk;
The Wild Geese do what others talk;
The way is long from France, you know,
He ll come at last when south winds blow.

O, softly was the maiden nurst
  In Castle Connells lordly bowers,
Where Skelligs billows boil and burst,
  And, far above, Dunkerron towers:
And she was noble as the hill,
Yet battle-flags are nobler still;
And she was graceful as the wave,
Yet who would live a tranquil slave?

And, so, her lover went to France,
  To serve the foe of Irelands foe;
Yet deep he swore, Whatever chance,
  I ll come some day when south winds blow.
And prouder hopes he told beside,
How she should be a princes bride,
How Louis would the Wild Geese send,
And Irelands weary woes should end.

But tyrants quenched her fathers hearth,
  And wrong and absence warped her mind;
The gentle maid, of gentle birth,
  Is moaning madly to the wind,
He said he d come, whateer betide;
He said I d be a happy bride:
O, long the way and hard the foe,
He ll come when southwhen south winds blow!

Thomas Osborne Davis's other poems:
  1. Emmeline Talbot
  2. The Boatman of Kinsale
  3. The Sack of Baltimore
  4. The Geraldines
  5. Argan Mór

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