• Michael Mullins
  • Michael "The Bard" Mullin
  • "The Bard of Foremass"
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    There’s a mountain crowned with heather
    In the far-off land, asthore!
    Where we dallied oft together
    In the distant days of yore.
    Then, in August and September,
    ‘Twas a lovely sight to see –
    As I’m sure you will remember
    If you still remember me.

    Once I plucked a heather blossom,
    And I set it in your hair;
    And you pinned one on my bosom –
    O, how happy we were there!
    O, those moments fair and fleeting!
    Sanguine hopes, and visions high!
    O, the rapture of each meeting!
    And the pain of each good-bye!

    Scenes of youth I well remember,
    Though my youth and prime are o’er;
    But in August and September
    I am haunted by them more:
    Haunted till a sad, wild longing
    Grips me, fills me with unrest,
    And the old home scenes come thronging,
    And old loves disturb my breast.

    Then the peewit’s lonesome crying,
    And the curlew’s plaintive call
    Come to me, when day is dying,
    And the gleaming shadows fall;
    And they fan hope’s fading ember,
    Those dear scenes again to see –
    Which I’m sure you still remember
    If you still remember me.




    My love lived near Knockmanny;
    Though but a poor man’s son,
    He was noble and kind-hearted –
    His home a happy one.
    He tilled his father’s acres,
    And his heart was light and gay,
    Till o’er the foam began to roam
    His thoughts from home away.

    I, too, lived near Knockmanny;
    Much wealth my parents had;
    I was their only daughter,
    And I was seldom sad,
    Till my father sternly told me
    I must cease my love to see –
    Because he was a poor man
    And not a match for me.

    His home beside Knockmanny
    My love soon left behind;
    He left me sad and lonely,
    He left his parents kind.
    He told me; “I’ll come back dear,
    When the yellow gold I’ve won;
    And then perhaps your father
    Will not scorn a poor man’s son.”

    O! beautiful Knockmanny
    The years may come and go;
    But round thee still shall linger
    Fond dreams of long ago.
    Thy emerald crown and wooded sides
    Recall to me the day
    When love first thrilled my young heart,
    For him who went away.


    O! beautiful Knockmanny,
    Romantic storied hill,
    Thy sylvan sides and silent ways
    I love to wander still;
    Where oft with me he listened
    To the song-birds in the trees,
    And that sad, yet pleasing, music
    The sighing of the breeze.

    Knockmanny O! Knockmanny,
    Now be a friend to me ;
    For my poor heart is broken
    I want thy sympathy.
    My love will come back never
    My love no more will tread
    Thy sylvan sides and silent paths
    For, oh! my love is dead.

    Knockmanny O! Knockmanny,
    It was for me he died –
    It was for me he went from thee,
    And crossed the ocean wide.
    Oh! cursed wealth, I hate thee;
    Oh! why are people proud
    Does Death heed wealth or titles,
    Or put pockets in the shroud?


    Michael Mullin ‘The Bard of Foremass’
    Foremass Lower, Sixmilecross, Co Tyrone.

    Sweet as the rose and fair,
    Maureen asthore!
    Lilies no lovelier,
    Maureen asthore!
    Artless and fond and shy,
    Gay as the lark on high –
    Why did you from us fly,
    Maureen asthore!

    When you forsook your nest,
    Maureen asthore!
    For the alluring West,
    Maureen asthore!
    Joy from our valley flew,
    Hope bade our hearts adieu,
    Darker the sunlight grew,
    Maureen asthore!

    Did fortune on you smile,
    Maureen asthore?
    Yes, for a little while,
    Maureen asthore!
    Soon did the roses pale,
    Faded our lily frail,
    Died far from Innisfail,
    Maureen asthore!

    In vain for you they wait,
    Maureen asthore!
    Home-coming, rich and great,
    Maureen asthore!
    Why should the old folk know?
    Frail are they now and low,
    Where you have gone they go,
    Maureen asthore!

    Michael Mullin ‘The Bard of Foremass’

    Foremass Lower, Sixmilecross, Co Tyrone.