Verse > Anthologies > Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed. > Poems of Places > Ireland
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed.  Poems of Places: An Anthology in 31 Volumes.
Ireland: Vol. V.  1876–79.
Blarney Castle
The Groves of Blarney
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        5
That spontaneous grow there,
Planted in order
By the sweet rock close.
’T is there ’s the daisy
And the sweet carnation,        10
The blooming pink,
And the rose so fair;
The daffodowndilly,
Likewise the lily,—
All flowers that scent        15
The sweet fragrant air.
’T is Lady Jeffers
That owns this station;
Like Alexander,
Or Queen Helen fair,        20
There ’s no commander
In all the nation,
For emulation,
Can with her compare.
Such walls surround her,        25
That no nine-pounder
Could dare to plunder
Her place of strength;
But Oliver Cromwell,
Her he did pommel,        30
And made a breach
In her battlement.
There ’s gravel-walks there
For speculation
And conversation        35
In sweet solitude.
’T is there the lover
May hear the dove, or
The gentle plover
In the afternoon;        40
And if a lady
Would be so engaging
As to walk alone in
Those shady bowers,
’T is there the courtier        45
He may transport her
Into some fort, or
All under ground.
For ’t is there ’s a cave where
No daylight enters,        50
But cats and badgers
Are forever bred;
Being mossed by nature,
That makes it sweeter
Than a coach-and-six        55
Or a feather-bed.
’T is there the lake is,
Well stored with perches
And comely eels in
The verdant mud;        60
Besides the leeches,
And groves of beeches,
Standing in order
For to guard the flood.
There ’s statues gracing        65
This noble place in,—
All heathen gods
And nymphs so fair;
Bold Neptune, Plutarch,
And Nicodemus,        70
All standing naked
In the open air!
So now to finish
This brave narration,
Which my poor genius        75
Could not entwine;
But were I Homer
Or Nebuchadnezzar,
’T is in every feature
I would make it shine.        80
There is a boat on
The lake to float on,
And lots of beauties
Which I can’t entwine;
But were I a preacher        85
Or a classic teacher,
In every feature
I ’d make ’em shine!
There is a stone there
That whoever kisses,        90
O, he never misses
To grow eloquent;
’T is he may clamber
To a lady’s chamber,
Or become a member        95
Of Parliament:
A clever spouter
He ’ll soon turn out, or
An out-and-outer,
“To be let alone.”        100
Don’t hope to hinder him,
Or to bewilder him,
Sure he ’s a pilgrim
From the Blarney Stone!

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