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

Blarney Castle

The Groves of Blarney

By Richard Alfred Milliken (1767–1815)

THE GROVES of Blarney

They look so charming,

Down by the purling

Of sweet silent streams,

Being banked with posies

That spontaneous grow there,

Planted in order

By the sweet rock close.

’T is there ’s the daisy

And the sweet carnation,

The blooming pink,

And the rose so fair;

The daffodowndilly,

Likewise the lily,—

All flowers that scent

The sweet fragrant air.

’T is Lady Jeffers

That owns this station;

Like Alexander,

Or Queen Helen fair,

There ’s no commander

In all the nation,

For emulation,

Can with her compare.

Such walls surround her,

That no nine-pounder

Could dare to plunder

Her place of strength;

But Oliver Cromwell,

Her he did pommel,

And made a breach

In her battlement.

There ’s gravel-walks there

For speculation

And conversation

In sweet solitude.

’T is there the lover

May hear the dove, or

The gentle plover

In the afternoon;

And if a lady

Would be so engaging

As to walk alone in

Those shady bowers,

’T is there the courtier

He may transport her

Into some fort, or

All under ground.

For ’t is there ’s a cave where

No daylight enters,

But cats and badgers

Are forever bred;

Being mossed by nature,

That makes it sweeter

Than a coach-and-six

Or a feather-bed.

’T is there the lake is,

Well stored with perches

And comely eels in

The verdant mud;

Besides the leeches,

And groves of beeches,

Standing in order

For to guard the flood.

There ’s statues gracing

This noble place in,—

All heathen gods

And nymphs so fair;

Bold Neptune, Plutarch,

And Nicodemus,

All standing naked

In the open air!

So now to finish

This brave narration,

Which my poor genius

Could not entwine;

But were I Homer

Or Nebuchadnezzar,

’T is in every feature

I would make it shine.

There is a boat on

The lake to float on,

And lots of beauties

Which I can’t entwine;

But were I a preacher

Or a classic teacher,

In every feature

I ’d make ’em shine!

There is a stone there

That whoever kisses,

O, he never misses

To grow eloquent;

’T is he may clamber

To a lady’s chamber,

Or become a member

Of Parliament:

A clever spouter

He ’ll soon turn out, or

An out-and-outer,

“To be let alone.”

Don’t hope to hinder him,

Or to bewilder him,

Sure he ’s a pilgrim

From the Blarney Stone!