Verse > Anthologies > William Stanley Braithwaite, ed. > Anthology of Massachusetts Poets
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William Stanley Braithwaite, ed. (1878–1962).  Anthology of Massachusetts Poets.  1922.
 
In Irish Rain
 
Martha Haskell Clark
 
 
THE GREAT world stretched its arms to me and held me to its breast,
They say I’ve song-birds in my throat, and give me of their best;
But sure, not all their gold can buy, can take me back again
To little Mag o’ Monagan’s a-singing in the rain.
 
The silver-slanting Irish rain, all warm and sweet that fills        5
The little brackened lowland pools, and drifts across the hills;
That turns the hill-grass cool and wet to dusty childish feet,
And hangs above the valley-roofs, filmed blue with burning peat.
 
And oh the kindly neighbor-folk that called the young ones in,
Down fragrant yellow-tapered paths that thread the prickly whin;        10
The hot, sweet smell of oaten-cake, the kettle purring soft,
The dear-remembered Irish speech—they call to me how oft!
 
They mind me just a slip o’ girl in tattered kirtle blue,
But oh they loved me for myself, and not for what I do!
And never one but had a joy to pass the time of day        15
With little Mag o’ Monagan’s a-laughing down the way.
 
There’s fifty roofs to shelter me where one was set before,
But make me free to that again—I’ll not be wanting more,
But sure I know not tears nor gold can turn the years again
To little Mag o’ Monagan’s a-singing in the rain.        20
 

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