Verse > Anthologies > The World’s Best Poetry > Vol. II. Love
Bliss Carman, et al., eds.  The World’s Best Poetry.
Volume II. Love.  1904.
VII. Love’s Power
Charlie Machree
William J. Hoppin (1813–1895)
COME over, come over
The river to me,
If ye are my laddie,
Bold Charlie machree.
Here ’s Mary McPherson        5
And Susy O’Linn,
Who say ye ’re faint-hearted,
And darena plunge in.
But the dark rolling water,
Though deep as the sea,        10
I know willna scare ye,
Nor keep ye frae me;
For stout is yer back,
And strong is yer arm,
And the heart in yer bosom        15
Is faithful and warm.
Come over, come over
The river to me,
If ye are my laddie,
Bold Charlie machree!        20
I see him, I see him!
He ’s plunged in the tide,
His strong arms are dashing
The big waves aside.
O, the dark rolling water        25
Shoots swift as the sea,
But blithe is the glance
Of his bonny blue ee.
And his cheeks are like roses,
Twa buds on a bough;        30
Who says ye ’re faint-hearted,
My brave Charlie, now?
Ho, ho, foaming river,
Ye may roar as ye go,
But ye canna bear Charlie        35
To the dark loch below!
Come over, come over
The river to me,
My true-hearted laddie,
My Charlie machree!        40
He ’s sinking, he ’s sinking,
O, what shall I do!
Strike out, Charlie, boldly,
Ten strokes and ye ’re thro’!
He ’s sinking, O Heaven!        45
Ne’er fear, man, ne’er fear;
I ’ve a kiss for ye, Charlie,
As soon as ye ’re here!
He rises, I see him,—
Five strokes, Charlie, mair,—        50
He ’s shaking the wet
From his bonny brown hair;
He conquers the current,
He gains on the sea,—
Ho, where is the swimmer        55
Like Charlie machree?
Come over the river,
But once come to me,
And I ’ll love ye forever,
Dear Charlie machree!        60
He ’s sinking, he ’s gone,—
O God! it is I,
It is I, who have killed him—
Help, help!—he must die!
Help, help!—ah, he rises,—        65
Strike out and ye ’re free!
Ho, bravely done, Charlie,
Once more now, for me!
Now cling to the rock,
Now gie us yer hand,—        70
Ye ’re safe, dearest Charlie,
Ye ’re safe on the land!
Come rest in my bosom,
If there ye can sleep;
I canna speak to ye,        75
I only can weep.
Ye ’ve crossed the wild river,
Ye ’ve risked all for me,
And I ’ll part frae ye never,
Dear Charlie machree!        80

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