Bright red is the sun on the waves of Lough Sheelin,
A cool, gentle breeze from the mountain is stealing,
While fair round its islets the small ripples play,
But fairer than all is the Flower of Finae.
Her hair is like night, and her eyes like grey morning,
She trips on the heather as if its touch scorning,
Yet her heart and her lips are as mild as May day,
Sweet Eily MacMahon, the Flower of Finae.
But who down the hill-side than red deer runs fleeter?
And who on the lake-side is hastening to greet her?
Who but Fergus O’Farrell, the fiery and gay,
The darling and pride of the Flower of Finae?
One kiss and one clasp, and one wild look of gladness;
Ah! why do they change on a sudden to sadness?—
He has told his hard fortune, no more he can stay,
He must leave his poor Eily to pine at Finae.
For Fergus O’Farrell was true to his sire-land,
And the dark hand of tyranny drove him from Ireland;
He joins the Brigade, in the wars far away,
But he vows he’ll come back to the Flower of Finae.
He fought at Cremona—she hears of his story;
He fought at Cassano—she’s proud of his glory.
Yet sadly she sings Siúbhail a rúin all the day,
“Oh! come, come, my darling, come home to Finae.”
Eight long years have passed, till she’s nigh broken-hearted,
Her reel, and her rock, and her flax she has parted;
She sails with the “Wild Geese” to Flanders away,
And leaves her sad parents alone in Finae.
Lord Clare on the field of Ramillies is charging—
Before him, the Sacsanach squadrons enlarging—
Behind him the Cravats their sections display—
Beside him rides Fergus and shouts for Finae.
On the slopes of La Judoigne the Frenchmen are flying
Lord Clare and his squadrons the foe still defying,
Outnumbered, and wounded, retreat in array;
And bleeding rides Fergus and thinks of Finae.
In the cloisters of Ypres a banner is swaying,
And by it a pale, weeping maiden is praying;
That flag’s the sole trophy of Ramillies’ fray;
This nun is poor Eily, the Flower of Finae.