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Schoolmates, marching as when we play'd
At soldiers once- - but now more staid ;
Those were the strangest sight to me
Who were drown'd, I knew, in the awful sea.
Straight and handsome folk; bent and weak too;
Some that I lov'd, and gasp'd to speak to;
Some but a day in their churchyard bed;
Some that I had not known were dead.
A long, long crowd, where each seem'd lonely,
Yet, of them all there was one, one only,
Rais'd a head or look'd my way:
She linger'd a moment—she might not stay.
How long since I saw that fair pale face !
Ah! mother, dear! might I only place
My head on thy breast, a moment to rest,
While thy hand on my tearful cheek were prest!
On, on a moving bridge they made,
Across the moon-stream, from shade to shade,

and old, women and men,
Many long-forgot, but remember'd then.
And first there came a bitter laughter,
A sound of tears the moment after;
And then a music, so lofty and gay,
That every morning, day by day,
I strive to recall it, if I may.


The versification of this poem is in admirable keeping with the subject, which betokens no mean artistic power.

One more lyric by Mr. Allingham, and that of a different kind, I must quote. What lover of poetry does not know his “Mary Donnelly ?”

Oh, lovely Mary Donnelly, it's you I love the best!
If fifty girls were round you, I'd hardly see the rest ;
Be what it may the time of day, the place be where it will,
Sweet looks of Mary Donnelly, they bloom before me still.

like mountain water that's flowing on a rock,
How clear they are, how dark they are! and they give me many a shock.
Red rowans warm in sunshine and wetted with a show'r,
Could ne'er express the charming lip that has me in its pow'r.
Her nose is straight and handsome, her eyebrows lifted up,
Her chin is very neat and pert, and smooth like a china cup,
Her hair's the brag of Ireland, so weighty and so fine;
It's rolling down upon her neck, and gather'd in a twine.

Her eyes


The dance o' last Whit-Monday night exceeded all before,
No pretty girl for miles about was missing from the floor;
But Mary kept the belt of love, and 0, but she was gay !
She danced a jig, she sang a song, that took my


away. When she stood up for dancing, her steps were so complete, The music nearly kill'd itself to listen to her feet; The fiddler moan'd his blindness, he heard her so much praised, But bless'd his luck to not be deaf, when once her voice she raised. And evermore I'm whistling or lilting what you sung, Your smile is always in my heart, your name beside my tongue But you've as many sweethearts as you'd count on both your

hands, And for myself there's not a thumb or little finger stands.

'Tis you're the flower o'woniankind in country or in town,
The higher I exalt you, the lower I'm cast down.
If some great lord should come this way, and see your beauty bright,

you to be his lady, I'd own it was but right.
O might we live together in a lofty palace hall,
Where joyful music rises, and where scarlet curtains fall!
O might we live together, in a cottage mean and small,
With sods of


the only roof, and mud the only wall !
O lovely Mary Donnelly, your beauty's my distress ;
It's far too beauteous to be mine, but I'll never wish it less.
The proudest place would fit your face, and I am poor and low;
But blessings be about you, dear, wherever you may go!

This is very exquisite. Mr. Allingham's ballads also claim mention as being far above the average of this favourite class of composition. “King Henry's Hunt,” “The Abbot of Inis

" falen,” and “The Ballad of Squire Curtis,” are examples of his strength in narrative verse. His longer stories, too,-“The

, Music Master," &c., should be read in order to gauge the versatility of the poet.

We now come to the last name in our list, that of Mr. Alfred Perceval Graves. Mr. Graves is a genuine singer, and his two volumes of published poems encourage us to hope for still greater things from his pen. His first volume, "Songs of Killarney, " demonstrated that he was a true poet; and he has more than confirmed the reputation then established, by his “Irish Songs and Ballads.” Song-writing, at least, whatever may be the case as regards other forms of poetry, is nothing without spontaneity, and this is one of the author's most predominant qualities. Every page of the volume shows that he knows

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Irish life thoroughly -- that he has observed the Irish peasant under all circumstances and conditions. Nor has he been content with this alone; he has put life into some of the old Irish traditions. A singer without humour and pathos would have small chance of obtaining a hearing in these days; but Mr. Graves has a large endowment of both these qualities. His “Father O'Flynn” is worthy to rank with some of the best things of its class, being extremely humorous and full of “ go." In so far as he has taken models, the writer has followed the best he could find. In “ Herring is King” we have a spirited song on a particular subject, where the verse and sentiment felicitously blend together. There is another thing, too, noticeable about this volume, viz., its freshness. Every stanza smacks of the thing dealt with, and that is a great matter, for it proves that the author has not been driven to burn the midnight oil to eke out his ideas in such language as he could pound into his service. In such pieces as the “ Mill Song” there is a second and deeper meaning behind that which rests upon the surface. It is songs like this which we want, songs that shall be teachers, because they deal with sentiments and emotions which affect all humanity. Mr. Graves may fairly look to wearing the laurels of Lover, if he but go on in the groove indicated by these volumes. The “Song of the Ghost" is a happy treatment of a legend which finds a home in the Scotch and other literatures. The two Irish idyls, “Riding Double” and “Riding Treble” are delightful.“ The Light in the Snow" is a poem of another type, more sustained in form and pathetic in its burden ; " Ambrose and Una" is a ballad

“ ” in the good old ballad form ; while “Snow Drift” touches deep chords in the breast by its subtle probings.' This “ Song of the Seasons" is also very happy;-

Oh! the Spring's delight

Is the cowslip brigbt,
As she laughs to the warbling linnet,

And a whistling thrush

On a white May bush,
And his mate on her nest within it.

Summer she shows

Her rose, her rose !
And oh! all the happy night long

The nightingale wooes her;

At dawn the lark sues her,
With the crystal surprise of his song.

King Autumn's crown

Is the barley brown,
Shed over with rosy fruit;

And the yellow trees

As they sigh in the breeze
Are the strings of his solemn lute.

Old Winter's breath

Is cold as death,
'Tis lonesome he's left the earth;

Yet the thrush he sings,

And the rose she springs

From the flame of his fairy hearth. The most casual glance at this volume will show that Mr. Graves is not a writer whose genius is exhausted by one class of effort. Like the Irish soil and the Irish people, he has both smiles and tears, and it would be difficult to say in which mood he is at his best. That he has a strong poetic sensibility, may be gathered from stanzas like the following, which will be found at the close of the poem entitled, The Hour we Parted":

The dreamy shadows
Along the meadows
Go softly stealing,

And falls the dew ;
And o'er the billows,
Like faithful swallows,
All, all my thoughts, dear,

Fly home to you.
With touches silken,

The crossest Kerry

In Adragole;
And like a fairy,
You're singing, Mary,
Till every keeler

Is foaming full.
The night is falling,
And you are calling
The cattle homeward,

With coaxing tone;
In God's own keeping,
Awake or sleeping,
'Tis now I leave you,

Maureen, Marvone!

I see you

The singing element pervades “ Jack the Jolly Ploughboy' and “The Fox Hunt.' Mr. Graves has been more than ordinarily successful in his poems from the Celtic. The story of King Cormac and the Fairy Branch, told in blank verse, is his longest effort as yet in this direction, but it fully warrants, I think, further excursions into the same rich field. As an example of the writer's skill in handling blank verse, always the most difficult task for a poet, I will take these lines, showing how one appeared before King Cormac, apparelled as a princess, and knelt at his feet weeping :


Cormac's heart
Was melted, and he asked her of her grief.
Then, with bowed head, she poured a lamentation
Of her young hero-lover fallen in fight.
And Cormac met her woe with words of solace,
And she took comfort, and turned to him a face
Whiter than any swan upon the wave-
A form of fairer fashion. Then the king
Looked closelier at her, and with wonder viewed
Her yellow curls, clustering like rings of gold
Around her waist, and marked her tearful eyes
Dart through their dusky fringes a dewy beam
Bluer than ever evening's weeping star
Shed through the curtain of a summer's cloud;
When, suddenly she open'd them fall on him
With wistful gaze, and as she looked, a blush
Took her pale visage, while her slender hand
Stole throbbing into his. A mighty spell
Possessed his soul, and nearer still and nearer
He drew her, till he breathed her red lips' balm,
And passionately had pressed them to his own.
When lo! the midmost row of apples rang
The warning of the Branch, and in his breast
He caught the woman's thievish hand upon it,
And wrung it from her grasp, and o'er her head
Shook it; and of a sudden her soft white palm
Shrivelled, her lovely apple-blossom cheeks
Withered away, her eyes of heavenly blue
Grew blear and evil, all her swan-like shape
Dwindled and shrank, till at the last there writhed,

Whining before him, a little crook-back witch.
There is nothing jejune or puerile in this description.
Indeed, it may be said of Mr. Graves's powers generally, that
they are rapidly ripening, and ripening satisfactorily. There is


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