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Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed. Poems of Places: An Anthology in 31 Volumes.
Ireland: Vol. V. 1876–79.

Innisfallen, the Island

Sweet Innisfallen

By Thomas Moore (1779–1852)

SWEET Innisfallen, fare thee well,

May calm and sunshine long be thine!

How fair thou art let others tell,—

To feel how fair shall long be mine.

Sweet Innisfallen, long shall dwell

In memory’s dream that sunny smile

Which o’er thee on that evening fell,

When first I saw thy fairy isle.

’T was light, indeed, too blest for one,

Who had to turn to paths of care,—

Through crowded haunts again to run,

And leave thee bright and silent there;

No more unto thy shores to come,

But, on the world’s rude ocean tost,

Dream of thee sometimes, as a home

Of sunshine he had seen and lost.

Far better in thy weeping hours

To part from thee, as I do now,

When mist is o’er thy blooming bowers,

Like sorrow’s veil on beauty’s brow.

For, though unrivalled still thy grace,

Thou dost not look, as then, too blest,

But thus in shadow, seem’st a place

Where erring man might hope to rest,—

Might hope to rest, and find in thee

A gloom like Eden’s, on the day

He left its shade, when every tree,

Like thine, hung weeping o’er his way.

Weeping or smiling, lovely isle!

And all the lovelier for thy tears,—

For though but rare thy sunny smile,

’T is heaven’s own glance when it appears.

Like feeling hearts, whose joys are few,

But, when indeed they come, divine,

The brightest light the sun e’er threw

Is lifeless to one gleam of thine!