Originally published under the title The Clanconnell War-Song in The Nation, January 28, 1843.
Proudly the note of the trumpet is sounding,
Loudly the war-cries arise on the gale,
Fleetly the steed by Lough Swilly is bounding
To join the thick squadrons in Samer’s green vale.
On every mountaineer!
Strangers to flight and fear;
Rush to the standard of dauntless Red Hugh!1
Bonnoght and Gallowglass
Throng from each mountain-pass!
On for old Erin! – O’Donnell-aboo!
Princely O’Neill to our aid is advancing
With many a chieftain and warrior clan;
A thousand proud steeds in his vanguard are prancing,
‘Neath the borderers brave from the banks of the Bann: –
Many a heart shall quail
Under the coat of mail;
Deeply the merciless foeman shall rue
When on his ear shall ring,
Borne on the breeze’s wing,
Tirconnell’s dread war-cry – O’Donnell-aboo.
Widely o’er Desmond the wild wolf is howling,
Fearless the eagle sweeps over the plain,
The fox in the streets of the city is prowling –
All, all, who would scare them are banished or slain!
Grasp, every stalwart hand,
Hackbut and battle-brand –
Pay them well back the deep debt so long due;
Norris and Clifford well
Can of Tirconnell tell –
Onward to glory! – O’Donnell-aboo!
Sacred the cause that Clanconnell’s defending –
The altars we kneel at and homes of our sires;
Ruthless the ruin the foe is extending –
Midnight is red with the plunderer’s fires!
On with O’Donnell, then,
Fight the old fight again,
Sons of Tirconnell all valiant and true!
Make the false Saxon feel
Erin’s avenging steel!
Strike for your country – O’Donnell-aboo!
1 The famous Red Hugh O’Donnell who aided O’Neill in defeating the best generals and most brilliant armies of Elizabeth.