Rights of Man (James Connoly) I speak with candour one night in slumber, My mind did wander near to Athlone, To that centre station of the Irish nation, Where a congregation unto me was shown, Beyond my counting upon a mountain, Near to a fountain that clearly ran, The earth did tremble I'll not dissemble, As they assembled for the Rights of Man. All clad in green I thought I seen, A virtuous Queen that was grave and old, Saying children dear do not fear, But come and hear what I will unfold, This fertile country for seven centuries, Since Strongbow's entry into our land, Has been kept under by foes outnumbered, And robbed and plundered of the Rights of Man. My cause you chided and so derided, When all divided alas you know, And in disorder round Erin's border, Strife grief and murder has laid you low, Let each communion detest disunion, And in love and union join hand in hand, Believe in Graine and proud Britannia, No more shall rob you of the Rights of Man. Through the azure sky I then did spy, A man to fly and he fast descends, Straightway comes down upon the ground, Where Erin round had her bosom friends, His dazzling mitre and cross was brighter, Than the stars at night or the midday sun, And in accents rare I do declare, He prayed success unto the Rights of Man. When his prayer was ended he condescended, His hand to lend it in freedom's cause, He said I'll aid you and always lead you, And still persuade you to Christian laws. When in affliction or sad restriction, My benediction with uplifted hand, I may explain it you shall obtain it, And always gain it with the Rights of Man. Then the population and congregation, In exultation agreed to part, They shook hands like brothers and kissed each other, While friends smothered each Irish heart. They separated, exhilarated, And animated at what went on, And as day was breaking poor Shiels awaking, Cried still be true unto the Rights of Man. FH apr97
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