The Memory of the Dead

 By John Kells Ingram

 

Who fears to speak of Ninety-Eight?
Who blushes at the name?
When cowards mock the patriots' fate,
Who hangs his head in shame?
He's all the knave, or half a slave,
Who slights his country thus;
But a true man, like you, man,
Will fill your glass with us.
 

We drink the memory of the brave,
The faithful and the few --
Some lie far off beyond the wave,
Some sleep in Ireland, too;
All -- all are gone -- but still lives on
The fame of those who died;
All true men, like you, men,
Remember them with pride.

Some on the shores of distant lands,
Their weary hearts have laid,
And by the stranger's heedless hands
Their lonely graves were made;
But though their clay be far away
Beyond the Atlantic foam,
In true men, like you men,
Their spirit's still at home.

The dust of some is Irish earth;
Among their own the rest;
And the same land that gave them birth
And we will pray that from their clay
Full many a race may start
Of true men, like you, men,
To act as brave a part.

They rose in dark and evil days
To right their native land;
They kindled here a living blaze
That nothing shall withstand.
Alas! that Might can vanquish Right
-- They fell and passed away;
But true men, like you, men,
Are plenty here today.

Then here's to their memory -- may it be
For us a guiding light,
To cheer our strife for liberty,
And teach us to unite.
Though good and ill, be Ireland's still,
Though sad as theirs, your fate
And true men be you, men,
Like those of Ninety-Eight.


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