Welcome to Poetry.com

Poetry.com is a huge collection of poems from famous and amateur poets from around the world — collaboratively published by a community of authors and contributing editors.

Navigate through our poetry database by subjects, alphabetically or simply search by keywords. You can submit a new poem, discuss and rate existing work, listen to poems using voice pronunciation and even translate pieces to many common and not-so-common languages.

Carolan's Prophecy

Felicia Dorothea Hemans 1793 (Liverpool, Lancashire) – 1835 (Dublin, County Dublin)

A sound of music, from amidst the hills,
Came suddenly, and died; a fitful sound
Of mirth, soon lost in wail.–Again it rose,
And sank in mournfulness.–There sat a bard,
By a blue stream of Erin, where it swept
Flashing thro' rock and wood; the sunset's light
Was on his wavy, silver-gleaming hair,
And the wind's whisper in the mountain-ash,

Whose clusters droop'd above. His head was bow'd,
His hand was on his harp, yet thence its touch
Had drawn but broken strains; and many stood,
Waiting around, in silent earnestness,
Th' unchaining of his soul, the gush of song,–
Many, and graceful forms! yet one alone
Seem'd present to his dream; and she indeed,
With her pale, virgin brow, and changeful cheek,
And the clear starlight of her serious eyes,
Lovely amidst the flowing of dark locks
And pallid braiding flowers, was beautiful,
Ev'n painfully!–a creature to behold
With trembling midst our joy, lest aught unseen
Should waft the vision from us, leaving earth
Too dim without its brightness!–Did such fear
O'ershadow, in that hour, the gifted one,
By his own rushing stream?–Once more he gaz'd
Upon the radiant girl, and yet once more
From the deep chords his wandering hand brought out
A few short festive notes, an opening strain

Of bridal melody, soon dash'd with grief,
As if some wailing spirit in the strings
Met and o'ermaster'd him: but yielding then
To the strong prophet-impulse, mournfully,
Like moaning waters o'er the harp he pour'd
The trouble of his haunted soul, and sang–

Voice of the grave!
I hear thy thrilling call;
It comes in the dash of the foaming wave,
In the sear leaf's trembling fall!
In the shiver of the tree,
I hear thee, O thou voice!
And I would thy warning were but for me,
That my spirit might rejoice.

But thou art sent
For the sad earth's young and fair,
For the graceful heads that have not bent
To the wintry hand of care!

They hear the wind's low sigh,
And the river sweeping free,
And the green reeds murmuring heavily,
And the woods–but they hear not thee!

Long have I striven
With my deep foreboding soul,
But the full tide now its bounds hath riven,
And darkly on must roll.
There's a young brow smiling near,
With a bridal white-rose wreath,–
Unto me it smiles from a flowery bier,
Touch'd solemnly by death!

Fair art thou, Morna!
The sadness of thine eye
Is beautiful as silvery clouds
On the dark-blue summer sky!

And thy voice comes like the sound
Of a sweet and hidden rill,
That makes the dim woods tuneful round–
But soon it must be still!

Silence and dust
On thy sunny lips must lie,
Make not the strength of love thy trust,
A stronger yet is nigh!
No strain of festal flow
That my hand for thee hath tried,
But into dirge-notes wild and low
Its ringing tones have died.

Young art thou, Morna!
Yet on thy gentle head,
Like heavy dew on the lily's leaves,
A spirit hath been shed!

And the glance is thine which sees
Thro' nature's awful heart–
But bright things go with the summer-breeze,
And thou too, must depart!

Yet shall I weep?
I know that in thy breast
There swells a fount of song too deep,
Too powerful for thy rest!
And the bitterness I know,
And the chill of this world's breath–
Go, all undimm'd, in thy glory go!
Young and crown'd bride of death!

Take hence to heaven
Thy holy thoughts and bright,
And soaring hopes, that were not given
For the touch of mortal blight!

Might we follow in thy track,
This parting should not be!
But the spring shall give us violets back,
And every flower but thee!

There was a burst of tears around the bard:
All wept but one, and she serenely stood,
With her clear brow and dark religious eye,
Rais'd to the first faint star above the hills,
And cloudless; though it might be that her cheek
Was paler than before.–So Morna heard
The minstrel's prophecy.
And spring return'd,
Bringing the earth her lovely things again,
All, save the loveliest far! A voice, a smile,
A young sweet spirit gone.

Rate this poem:(0.00 / 0 votes)
Font size:
Collection  Edit     
 

Submitted on May 13, 2011

3:42 min read
109 Views

Felicia Dorothea Hemans

Felicia Dorothea Hemans was an English poet. Two of her opening lines, "The boy stood on the burning deck" and "The stately homes of England", have acquired classic status. more…

All Felicia Dorothea Hemans poems | Felicia Dorothea Hemans Books

FAVORITE (1 fan)

Discuss this Felicia Dorothea Hemans poem with the community:

0 Comments

    Translation

    Find a translation for this poem in other languages:

    Select another language:

    • - Select -
    • 简体中文 (Chinese - Simplified)
    • 繁體中文 (Chinese - Traditional)
    • Español (Spanish)
    • Esperanto (Esperanto)
    • 日本語 (Japanese)
    • Português (Portuguese)
    • Deutsch (German)
    • العربية (Arabic)
    • Français (French)
    • Русский (Russian)
    • ಕನ್ನಡ (Kannada)
    • 한국어 (Korean)
    • עברית (Hebrew)
    • Gaeilge (Irish)
    • Українська (Ukrainian)
    • اردو (Urdu)
    • Magyar (Hungarian)
    • मानक हिन्दी (Hindi)
    • Indonesia (Indonesian)
    • Italiano (Italian)
    • தமிழ் (Tamil)
    • Türkçe (Turkish)
    • తెలుగు (Telugu)
    • ภาษาไทย (Thai)
    • Tiếng Việt (Vietnamese)
    • Čeština (Czech)
    • Polski (Polish)
    • Bahasa Indonesia (Indonesian)
    • Românește (Romanian)
    • Nederlands (Dutch)
    • Ελληνικά (Greek)
    • Latinum (Latin)
    • Svenska (Swedish)
    • Dansk (Danish)
    • Suomi (Finnish)
    • فارسی (Persian)
    • ייִדיש (Yiddish)
    • հայերեն (Armenian)
    • Norsk (Norwegian)
    • English (English)

    Citation

    Use the citation below to add this poem to your bibliography:

    Style:MLAChicagoAPA

    "Carolan's Prophecy" Poetry.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2021. Web. 12 Jun 2021. <https://www.poetry.com/poem/13486/carolan's-prophecy>.

    We need you!

    Help us build the largest poetry community and poems collection on the web!

    Browse Poetry.com

    Quiz

    Are you a poetry master?

    »
    How many syllables an Iambic Pentameter line must have?
    • A. 10
    • B. 12
    • C. 20
    • D. 3

    Our favorite collection of

    Famous Poets

    »