Verse > Anthologies > William McCarty, ed. > The American National Song Book
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William McCarty, comp.  The American National Song Book.  1842.
 
Ierne’s Sons
 
WAR, demon of destruction fell,
  Now mounts his iron rapid car,
Invoking with infernal yell
  His furious powers from afar;
Go, bid the bolts of carnage roar        5
Tremendous on Columbia’s shore.
  Lo! Erin’s sons reply,
Ierne’s sons thy menace scorn,
Ierne’s dauntless sons are born
  To conquer or to die.        10
 
Hark! hark! the murdering cannons roar,
  The trumpet rouses all to arms—
Arise, ye brave of Erin’s shore,
  Arise and meet fell war’s alarms:
Let every breast with valour glow,        15
And bravely meet the common foe:
  See, see the Britons nigh;
Columbia calls—the foe despise—
My darling sons, arise, arise,
  To conquer or to die.        20
 
Mark, how the ensanguined plains along,
  With fury beaming from their eyes,
Thy sons, O Erin, gladly throng,
  While shouts of glory rend the skies.
Their trusty rifles poised in air,        25
Well polish’d on their shoulders glare,
  And august banners fly:
Now smoke deprives the day of light,
Thy heroes nobly close the fight,
  To conquer or to die.        30
 
See! how they glare with martial pride,
  While jarring peals assail their ear;
No more the haughty foes deride,
  Ierne’s heroes, void of fear
But gasping midst huge heaps of slain,        35
Inglorious fall upon the plain,
  Or for protection fly:
See! how they rush with shrieks of woe;
See! how the brave pursue their foe,
  To conquer or to die.        40
 
Thy heroes now with victory bound,
  And shouts of glory meet the sky,
O! let thy hills and vales resound
  The patriots’ dirge who nobly die.
Columbia soothe their noble breast,        45
And fondly sink them into rest;
  For you they bleeding lie;
They fought, big with pure freedom’s love,
And for thy glory fighting, strove
  To conquer or to die.        50
 
 
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