Verse > Anthologies > The World’s Best Poetry > Vol. VII. Descriptive: Narrative
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Bliss Carman, et al., eds.  The World’s Best Poetry.
Volume VII. Descriptive: Narrative.  1904.
 
Descriptive Poems: II. Nature and Art
The Bells of Shandon
Francis Sylvester Mahony (Father Prout) (1804–1866)
 
 Sabbata pango;
Funera plango;
Solemnia clango.
Inscription on an Old Bell.    

WITH deep affection
And recollection
I often think on
  Those Shandon bells,
Whose sounds so wild would,        5
In the days of childhood,
Fling round my cradle
  Their magic spells.
 
On this I ponder
Where’er I wander,        10
And thus grow fonder,
  Sweet Cork, of thee,—
With thy bells of Shandon,
That sound so grand on
The pleasant waters        15
  Of the river Lee.
 
I ’ve heard bells chiming
Full many a clime in,
Tolling sublime in
  Cathedral shrine,        20
While at a glib rate
Brass tongues would vibrate;
But all their music
  Spoke naught like thine.
 
For memory, dwelling        25
On each proud swelling
Of thy belfry, knelling
  Its bold notes free,
Made the bells of Shandon
Sound far more grand on        30
The pleasant waters
  Of the river Lee.
 
I ’ve heard bells tolling
“Old Adrian’s Mole” in,
Their thunder rolling        35
  From the Vatican,—
And cymbals glorious
Swinging uproarious
In the gorgeous turrets
  Of Notre Dame;        40
 
But thy sounds were sweeter
Than the dome of Peter
Flings o’er the Tiber,
  Pealing solemnly.
O, the bells of Shandon        45
Sound far more grand on
The pleasant waters
  Of the river Lee.
 
There ’s a bell in Moscow;
While on tower and kiosko        50
In Saint Sophia
  The Turkman gets,
And loud in air
Calls men to prayer,
From the tapering summit        55
  Of tall minarets.
 
Such empty phantom
I freely grant them;
But there ’s an anthem
  More dear to me,—        60
’T is the bells of Shandon,
That sound so grand on
The pleasant waters
  Of the river Lee.
 
 
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