I’ve lit the Christmas candle,
As we used to long ago
When it shone through cabin windows
On Holly-hedge and snow.
In this fine new house they’ve built me
That is furnished rich and fair-
But I’m hearing now the breakers rolling round the cliffs of Moher,
And my heart is aching, aching for a breath of Irish air.

The wren boys on St. Stephen’s Day.
Went singin’ up and down
With their poor dead wren and thorn bush,
I heard them through the town.
But to-night down lighted city streets,
I hear the distant band,
And when’er they play ‘our own’ hymns or tune of dear old Ireland,
The poor old foolish heart of me is in another land.

‘Twas a lonely hillside chapel,
Where we tramped to midnight Mass,
With the flaring lights we carried
Throwing shadows on the grass.
But to-night my boy will drive me
In his grand new limousine,
And he’ll wrap my furs around me, proudly caring for his Mother,
And I’ll ride to the Cathedral just as grand as any queen.

Ah! No, I’m not repinin’,
And I love this wide new land,
And I’m proud to see the childer
Growin’ prosperous and grand,
But roots strike deep in Irish soil,
Old memories are sweet,
And to-night my heart is yearnin’ for the cabin I was born in,
And I smell the reek of turf-smoke driftin’ up the city streets.

by Alice Guerin Crist

Other poems of CRIST (36)

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