Verse > Anthologies > > Arthur Quiller-Couch, ed. > The Oxford Book of Victorian Verse
Arthur Quiller-Couch, comp.  The Oxford Book of Victorian Verse.  1922.
Eileen Aroon
By Gerald Griffin (1803–1840)
WHEN like the early rose,
                Eileen Aroon!
Beauty in childhood blows,
                Eileen Aroon!
When, like a diadem,        5
Buds blush around the stem,
Which is the fairest gem?—
                Eileen Aroon!
Is it the laughing eye,
                Eileen Aroon!        10
Is it the timid sigh,
                Eileen Aroon!
Is it the tender tone,
Soft as the string’d harp’s moan?
O, it is truth alone,—        15
                Eileen Aroon!
When like the rising day,
                Eileen Aroon!
Love sends his early ray,
                Eileen Aroon!        20
What makes his dawning glow,
Changeless through joy or woe?
Only the constant know:—
                Eileen Aroon!
I know a valley fair,        25
                Eileen Aroon!
I knew a cottage there,
                Eileen Aroon!
Far in that valley’s shade
I knew a gentle maid,        30
Flower of a hazel glade,—
                Eileen Aroon!
Who in the song so sweet?
                Eileen Aroon!
Who in the dance so fleet?        35
                Eileen Aroon!
Dear were her charms to me,
Dearer her laughter free,
Dearest her constancy,—
                Eileen Aroon!        40
Were she no longer true,
                Eileen Aroon!
What should her lover do?
                Eileen Aroon!
Fly with his broken chain        45
Far o’er the sounding main,
Never to love again,—
                Eileen Aroon!
Youth most with time decay,
                Eileen Aroon!        50
Beauty must fade away,
                Eileen Aroon!
Castles are sack’d in war,
Chieftains are scatter’d far
Truth is a fixèd star,—        55
                Eileen Aroon.

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