19+ Best Thomas Moore Poems

Thomas Moore was an Irish poet, singer, songwriter, and entertainer, now best remembered for the lyrics of “The Minstrel Boy” and “The Last Rose of Summer”. As Lord Byron’s named literary executor, along with John Murray, Moore was responsible for burning Lord Byron’s memoirs after his death.

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Famous Thomas Moore Poems

Fill The Bumper Fair

Fill the bumper fair!
Every drop we sprinkle
O’er the brow of Care
Smooths away a wrinkle.
Wit’s electric flame
Ne’er so swiftly passes,
As when through the frame
It shoots from brimming glasses.
Fill the bumper fair!
Every drop we sprinkle
O’er the brow of Care
Smooths away a wrinkle.

Sages can, they say,
Grasp the lightning’s pinions,
And bring down its ray
From the starr’d dominions:
So we, Sages, sit,
And, ‘mid bumpers brightening,
From the Heaven of Wit
Draw down all its lightning.
Fill the bumper, etc.

Wouldst thou know what first
Made our souls inherit
This ennobling thirst
For wine’s celestial spirit?
It chanced, upon that day,
When, as bards inform us,
Prometheus stole away
The living fires that warm us:
Fill the bumper etc.

The careless Youth, when up
To Glory’s fount aspiring,
Took nor urn nor cup
To hide the pilfer’d fire in. —
But oh, his joy, when, round
The halls of heaven spying,
Among the stars he found,
The bowl of Bacchus lying!
Fill the bumper, etc.

Some drops were in that bowl,
Remains of last night’s pleasure,
With which the Sparks of Soul
Mix’d their burning treasure.
Hence the goblet’s shower
Hath such spells to win us;
Hence its mighty power
O’er that flame within us.
Fill the bumper fair!
Every drop we sprinkle
O’er the brow of Care
Smooths away a wrinkle.

Epistle Of Condolence From A Slave-Lord To A Cotton-Lord

Alas ! my dear friend, what a state of affairs !
How unjustly we both are despoil’d of our rights !
Not a pound of black flesh shall I leave to my heirs,
Nor must you any more work to death little whites.

Both forced to submit to that general controller
Of King, Lords, and cotton-mills Public Opinion ;
No more shall you beat with a big billy-roller,
Nor I with the cart-whip assert my dominion.

Whereas, were we suffered to do as we please
With our Blacks and our Whites, as of yore we were let,
We might range them alternate, like harpsichord keys,
And between us thump out a good piebald duet.

But this fun is all over; farewell to the zest
Which Slavery now lends to each cup we sip ;
Which makes still the cruellest coffee the best,
And that sugar the sweetest which smacks of the whip.

Farewell, too, the Factory’s white pickaninnies,
Small, living machines, which, if flogg’d to their tasks,
Mix so well with their namesakes, the billies and jennies,
That which have got souls in ’em nobody asks ;

Little Maids of the Mill, who, themselves but ill fed,
Are oblig’d, ‘mong their other benevolent cares,
To keep ‘feeding the scribblers,’ and better, ’tis said,
Than old Blackwood or Fraser have ever fed theirs.

All this is now o’er, and so dismal my loss is,
So hard ’tis to part from the smack of the thong,
That I mean (from pure love for the old whipping process)
To take to whipt syllabub all my life long.

Weep On, Weep On

Weep on, weep on, your hour is past,
Your dreams of pride are o’er;
The fatal chain is round you cast,
And you are men no more.
In vain the hero’s heart hath bled;
The sage’s tongue hath warn’d in vain;
Oh, Freedom! once thy flame hath fled,
It never lights again!

Weep on — perhaps in after days,
They’ll learn to love your name,
When many a deed may wake in praise
That long hath slept in blame.
And when they tread the ruin’d isle,
Where rest, at length, the lord and slave,
They’ll wondering ask, how hands so vile
Could conquer hearts so brave?

“‘Twas fate,” they’ll say, “a wayward fate
Your web of discord wove;
And while your tyrants join’d in hate,
You never join’d in love.
But hearts fell off that ought to twine,
And man profaned what God had given;
Till some were heard to curse the shrine
Where others knelt in heaven!”

Oh, Banquet Not

Oh, banquet not in those shining bowers,
Where Youth resorts, but come to me,
For mine’s a garden of faded flowers,
More fit for sorrow, for age, and thee.
And there we shall have our feast of tears,
And many a cup in silence pour;
Our guests, the shades of former years,
Our toasts, to lips that bloom no more.

There, while the myrtle’s withering boughs
Their lifeless leaves around us shed,
We’ll brim the bowl to broken vows
To friends long lost, the changed, the dead.
Or, while some blighted laurel waves
Its branches o’er the dreary spot,
We’ll drink to those neglected graves
Where valour sleeps, unnamed, forgot.

Sweet Innisfallen

Sweet Innisfallen, fare thee well,
May calm and sunshine long be thine!
How fair thou art let others tell —
To feel how fair shall long be mine.

Sweet Innisfallen, long shall dwell
In memory’s dream that sunny smile,
Which o’er thee on that evening fell,
When first I saw thy fairy isle.

‘Twas light, indeed, too blest for one,
Who had to turn to paths of care —
Through crowded haunts again to run,
And leave thee bright and silent there;

No more unto thy shores to come,
But, on the world’s rude ocean tost,
Dream of thee sometimes as a home
Of sunshine he had seen and lost.

Far better in thy weeping hour
To part from thee, as I do now,
When mist is o’er thy blooming bowers,
Like sorrow’s veil on beauty’s brow.

For, though unrivall’d still thy grace,
Thou dost not look, as then, too blest,
But, thus in shadow, seem’st a place
Where erring man might hope to rest —

Might hope to rest, and find in thee
A gloom like Eden’s, on the day
He left its shade, when every tree,
Like thine, hung weeping o’er his way.

Weeping or smiling, lovely isle!
And all the lovelier for thy tears —
For though but rare thy sunny smile,
‘Tis heaven’s own glance when it appears.

Like feeling hearts whose joys are few,
But, when indeed they come, divine —
The brightest light the sun e’er threw
Is lifeless to one gleam of thine!

Though The Last Glimpse Of Erin With Sorrow I See

Though the last glimpse of Erin with sorrow I see,
Yet wherever thou art shall seem Erin to me;
In exile thy bosom shall still be my home,
And thine eyes make my climate wherever we roam.

To the gloom of some desert or cold rocky shore,
Where the eye of the stranger can haunt us no more,
I will fly with my Coulin, and think the rough wind
Less rude than the foes we leave frowning behind.

And I’ll gaze on thy gold hair as graceful it wreathes,
And hang o’er thy soft harp, as wildly it breathes;
Nor dread that the cold-hearted Saxon will tear
One chord from that harp, or one lock from that hair.

The Prince’s Day

Though dark are our sorrows, today we’ll forget them,
And smile through our tears, like a sunbeam in showers:
There never were hearts, if our rulers would let them,
More form’d to be grateful and blest than ours.
But just when the chain,
Has ceased to pain,
And hope has enwreathed it round with flowers,
There comes a new link,
Our spirits to sink —
Oh! the joy that we taste, like the light of the poles,
Is a flash amid darkness, too brilliant to stay;
But, though ’twere the last little spark in our souls,
We must light it up now, on our Prince’s Day.

Contempt on the minion who calls you disloyal!
Though fierce to your foe, to your friends you are true;
And the tribute most high to a head that is royal,
Is love from a heart that loves liberty too.
While cowards, who blight
Your fame, your right,
Would shrink from the blaze of the battle array,
The Standard of Green
In front would be seen —
Oh, my life on your faith! were you summon’d this minute,
You’d cast every bitter remembrance away,
And show what the arm of old Erin has in it,
When roused by the foe, on her Prince’s Day.

He loves the Green Isle, and his love is recorded
In hearts which have suffer’d too much to forget;
And hope shall be crown’d, and attachment rewarded,
And Erin’s gay jubileee shine out yet.
The gem may be broke
By many a stroke,
But nothing can cloud its native ray;
Each fragment will cast
A light to the last —
And thus, Erin, my country, though broken thou art,
There’s lustre wiithin thee, that ne’er will decay;
A spirit which beams through each suffering part,
And now smiles at all pain on the Prince’s Day.

Ode To The Sublime Porte

Great Sultan, how wise are thy state compositions!
And oh, above all, I admire that Decree,
In which thou command’st, that all she politicians
Shall forthwith be strangled and cast in the sea.

‘Tis my fortune to know a lean Benthamite spinster —
A maid, who her faith in old Jeremy puts;
Who talks, with a lisp, of the “last new Westminster,”
And hopes you’re delighted with “Mill upon Gluts”;

Who tells you how clever one Mr. Fun-blank is,
How charming his Articles ‘gainst the Nobility; —
And assures you that even a gentleman’s rank is,
In Jeremy’s school, of no sort of utility.

To see her, ye Gods, a new number perusing —
Art. 1 – “On the Needle’s variations”, by Pl–e;
Art. 2 – By her fav’rite Fun-blank – so amusing!
“Dear man! he makes poetry quite a Law case.”

Art. 3 -“Upon Fallacies”, Jeremy’s own —
(Chief Fallacy being, his hope to find readers); –
Art. 4 – “Upon Honesty”, author unkown; —
Art. 5 – (by the young Mr. M–) “Hints to Breeders”.

Oh, Sultan, oh, Sultan, though oft for the bag
And the bowstring, like thee, I am tempted to call —
Though drowning’s too good for each blue-stocking hag,
I would bag this she Benthamite first of them all!

And, lest she should ever again lift her head
From the watery bottom, her clack to renew —
As a clog, as a sinker, far better than lead,
I would hang round her neck her own darling Review.

Though Humble The Banquet

Though humble the banquet to which I invite thee,
Thou’lt find there the best a poor bard can command;
Eyes, beaming with welcome, shall throng round, to light thee,
And Love serve the feast with his own willing hand.

And though Fortune may seem to have turn’d from the dwelling
Of him thou regardest her favouring ray,
Thou wilt find there a gift, all her treasures excelling,
Which, proudly he feels, hath ennobled his way.

‘Tis that freedom of mind, which no vulgar dominion
Can turn from the path a pure conscience approves,
Which, with hope in the heart, and no chain on the pinion,
Holds upwards its course to the light which it loves.

‘Tis this makes the pride of his humble retreat,
And with this, though of all other treasures bereaved,
The breeze of his garden to him is more sweet
Than the costliest incense that Pomp e’er received.

Then, come, if a board so untempting hath power
To win thee from grandeur, its best shall be thine;
And there’s one, long the light of the bard’s happy bower,
Who, smiling will blend her bright welcome with mine.

The Ghost Of Miltiades

The Ghost of Miltiades came at night,
And he stood by the bed of the Benthamite,
And he said, in a voice, that thrill’d the frame,
“If ever the sound of Marathon’s name
Hath fir’d they blood or flush’d thy brow,
Lover of Liberty, rise thee now!”

The Benthamite, yawning, left his bed —
Away to the Stock Exchange he sped,
And he found the Scrip of Greece so high,
That it fir’d his blood, it flush’d his eye,
And oh, ’twas a sight to see,
For never was Greek more Greek than he!
And still as the premium higher went,
His ecstas rose – so much per cent.,
(As we see in a glass, that tells the weather,
The heat and the silver rise together,)
And Liberty sung from the patriot’s lip,
While a voice from pocket whisper’d “Scrip!”
The Ghost of Miltiades came again; —
He smil’d as the pale moon smiles through rain,
For his soul was glad at the patriot strain;
(And poor, dear ghost — how little he knew
The jobs and the tricks of the Philhellene crew!)
“Blessings and thanks!” was all he said,
Then, melting away, like a night-dream, fled!

The Benthamite hears — amaz’d that ghosts
Could be such fools — and away he posts,
A patriot still? Ah no, ah no —
Goddess of Freedom, thy scrip is low,
And, warm and fond as they lovers are,
Thou triest their passion, when under par.
The Benthamite’s ardour fast decays,
By turns he weeps, and swears, and prays,
And wishes the d–l had Crescent and Cross,
Ere he had been forc’d to sell at a loss.
They quote thim the Stock of various nations,
But, spite of his classical associations,
Lord how he loathes the Greek quotations!

“Who’ll buy my Scrip! Who’ll buy my Scrip?”
Is now the theme of the patriot’s lip,
And he runs to tell how hard his lot is
To Messrs. Orlando and Luriottis,
And says, “Oh Greece, for Liberty’s sake,
Do buy my Scrip and I vow to break
Those dark, unholy bonds of thine —
If you’ll only consent to buy up mine!”
The Ghost of Miltiades came once more; —
His brow, like the night, was lowering o’er,
And he said, with a look that flash’d dismay,
“Of Liberty’s foes the worst are they
Who turn to a trade her cause divine,
And gamble for gold on Freedom’s shrine!”
Thus saying, the Ghost, as he took his flight,
Gave a Parthian kick to the Benthamite,
Which sent him, whimpering, off to Jerry —
And vanish’d away to the Stygian ferry!

Linda To Hafed

FROM ‘THE FIRE-WORSHIPPERS.’

‘How sweetly,’ said the trembling maid,
Of her own gentle voice afraid,
So long had they in silence stood,
Looking upon that moonlight flood,–
‘How sweetly does the moonbeam smile
To-night upon yon leafy isle!
Oft in my fancy’s wanderings,
I’ve wished that little isle had wings,
And we, within its fairy bowers,
Were wafted off to seas unknown,
Where not a pulse should beat but ours,
And we might live, love, die alone!
Far from the cruel and the cold,–
Where the bright eyes of angels only
Should come around us, to behold
A paradise so pure and lonely!
Would this be world enough for thee?’–
Playful she turned, that he might see
The passing smile her cheek put on;
But when she marked how mournfully
His eyes met hers, that smile was gone;
And, bursting into heartfelt tears,
‘Yes, yes,’ she cried, ‘my hourly fears,
My dreams, have boded all too right,–
We part–forever part–to-night!
I knew, I knew it could not last,–
‘T was bright, ‘t was heavenly, but ‘t is past!
O, ever thus, from childhood’s hour,
I’ve seen my fondest hopes decay;
I never loved a tree or flower
But ‘t was the first to fade away.
I never nursed a dear gazelle,
To glad me with its soft black eye,
But when it came to know me well,
And love me, it was sure to die!
Now, too, the joy most like divine
Of all I ever dreamt or knew,
To see thee, hear thee, call thee mine,–
O misery! must I lose that too?’

Translation From The Gull Language

‘Twas grav’d on the Stone of Destiny,
In letters four, and letters three;
And ne’er did the King of the Gulls go by
But those awful letters scar’d his eye;
For he knew that a Prophet Voice had said
“As long as those words by man were read,
The ancient race of the Gulls should ne’er
One hour of peace or plenty share.”
But years and years successive flew
And the letters still more legible grew, —
At top, a T, an H, an E,
And underneath, D. E. B. T.

Some thought them Hebrew, — such as Jews,
More skill’d in Scrip than Scripture use;
While some surmis’d ’twas an ancient way
Of keeping accounts, (well known in the day
Of the fam’d Didlerius Jeremias,
Who had thereto a wonderful bias,)
And prov’d in books most learnedly boring,
‘Twas called the Pontick way of scoring.
Howe’er this be, there never were yet
Seven letters of the alphabet,
That, ‘twixt them form’d so grim a spell,
Or scar’d a Land of Gulls so well,
As did this awful riddle-me-ree
Of T.H.E.D.E.B.T.

Hark! – it is struggling Freedom’s cry;
“Help, help, ye nations, or I die;
‘Tis freedom’s fight, and on the field
Where I expire, your doom is seal’d.”
The Gull-King hears the awakening call,
He hath summon’d his Peers and Patriots all,
And he asks, “Ye noble Gulls, shall we
Stand basely by at the fall of the Free,
Nor utter a curse, nor deal a blow?”
And they answer, with voice of thunder, “No.”

Out fly their flashing swords in the air! –
But, — why do they rest suspended there?
What sudden blight, what baleful charm,
Hath chill’d each eye and check’d each arm?
Alas! some withering hand hath thrown
The veil from off that fatal stone,
And pointing now, with sapless finger,
Showeth where dark those letters linger, —
Letters four, and letters three,
T.H.E. D.E.B.T.

At sight thereof, each lifted brand
Powerless falls from every hand;
In vain the Patriot knits his brow, —
Even talk, his staple, fails him now.
In vain the King like a hero treads,
His Lords of the Treasury shake their heads;
And to all his talk of “brave and free”,
No answer getteth His Majesty
But “T.H.E. D.E.B.T.”

In short, the whole Gull nation feels
The’re fairly spell-bound, neck and heels;
And so, in the face of the laughing world,
Must e’en sit down, with banners furled,
Adjourning all their dreams sublime
Of glory and war to — some other time.

The Song Of O’Ruark, Prince Of Breffni

The valley lay smiling before me,
Where lately I left her behind;
Yet I trembled, and something hung o’er me,
That sadden’d the joy of my mind.
I look’d for the lamp which, she told me,
Should shine when her Pilgrim return’d;
But, though darkness began to infold me,
No lamp from the battlements burn’d!

I flew to her chamber — ’twas lonely,
As if the loved tenant lay dead; —
Ah, would it were death, and death only!
But no, the young false one had fled.
And there hung the lute that could soften
My very worst pains into bliss;
While the hand that had waked it so often
Now throbb’d to a proud rival’s kiss.

There was a time, falsest of women,
When Breffni’s good sword would have sought
That man, through a million of foemen,
Who dared but to wrong thee in thought!
While now — oh degenerate daughter
Of Erin, how fallen is thy fame!
And through ages of bondage and slaughter,
Our country shall bleed for thy shame.

Already the curse is upon her,
And strangers her valleys profane;
They come to divide, to dishonour,
And tyrants they long will remain.
But onward! — the green banner rearing,
Go, flesh every sword to the hilt;
On our side is Virtue and Erin,
On theirs is the Saxon and Guilt.

I Saw Thy Form In Youthful Prime

I saw thy form in youthful prime,
Nor thought that pale decay
Would steal before the steps of Time,
And waste its bloom away, Mary!
Yet still thy features wore that light,
Which fleets not with the breath;
And life ne’er look’d more truly bright
Than in thy smile of death, Mary!

As streams that run o’er golden mines,
Yet humbly, calmly glide,
Nor seem to know the wealth that shines
Within their gentle tide, Mary!
So veil’d beneath the simplest guise,
Thy radiant genius shone,
And that which charm’d all other eyes
Seem’d worthless in thy own, Mary!

If souls could always dwell above,
Thou ne’er hadst left that sphere;
Or could we keep the souls we love,
We ne’er had lost thee here, Mary!
Though many a gifted mind we meet,
Though fairest forms we see,
To live with them is far less sweet
Than to remember thee, Mary!

The Sinking Fund Cried

Take your bell, take your bell,
Good Crier, and tell
To the Bulls and the Bears, till their ears are stunn’d,
That, lost or stolen,
Or fall’n through a hole in
The Treasury floor, is the Sinking Fund!

O yes! O yes!
Can anybody guess
What the deuce has become of this Treasury wonder?
It has Pitt’s name on’t,
All brass, in the front,
And R–b–ns–n’s scrawl’d with a goose-quill under.

Folks well knew what
Would soon be its lot,
When Frederick or Jenky set hobnobbing,[1]
And said to each other,
“Suppose, dear brother,
We make this funny old Fund worth robbing.”

We are come, alas!
To a very pretty pass —
Eight Hundred Millions of score, to pay,
With but Five in the till,
To discharge the bill,
And even that Five too, whipp’d away!

Stop thief! stop thief! —
From the Sub to the Chief,
These Genmen of Finance are plundering cattle —
Call the watch, call Bougham
Tell Joseph Hume,
That best of Charleys, to spring his rattle.

Whoever will bring
This aforesaid thing
To the well-known house of Robinson and Jenkin,
Shall be paid, with thanks,
In the notes of banks,
Whose Funds have all learn’d “the Art of Sinking.”

O yes! O yes!
Can any body guess
What the devil has become of the Treasury wonder?
It has Pitt’s name on ‘t,
All brass, in the front,
And R–b–ns–n’s, scrawl’d with a goose-quill under.

To Ladies’ Eyes

To Ladies’ eyes a round, boy,
We can’t refuse, we can’t refuse;
Though bright eyes so abound, boy,
‘Tis hard to choose, ’tis hard to choose.
For thick as stars that lighten
Yon airy bowers, yon airy bowers,
The countless eyes that brighten
This earth of ours, this earth of ours.
But fill the cup — where’er, boy,
Our choice may fall, our choice may fall,
We’re sure to find Love there, boy,
So drink them all! so drink them all!

Some looks there are so holy,
They seem but given, they seem but given,
As shining beacons, solely,
To light to heaven, to light to heaven,
While some — oh! ne’er believe them —
With tempting ray, with tempting ray,
Would lead us (God forgive them!)
The other way, the other way.
But fill the cup — where’er, boy,
Our choice may fall, our choice may fall,
We’re sure to find Love there, boy;
So drink them all! so drink them all!

In some, as in a mirror,
Love seems pourtray’d, Love seems pourtray’d,
But shun the flattering error,
‘Tis but his shade, ’tis but his shade.
Himself has fix’d his dwelling
In eyes we know, in eyes we know,
And lips — but this is telling —
So here they go! so here they go!
Fill up, fill up — where’er, boy,
Our choice may fall, our choice may fall,
We’re sure to find Love there, boy;
So drink them all ! so drink them all!

Song Of The Evil Spirit Of The Woods

Now the vapor, hot and damp,
Shed by day’s expiring lamp,
Through the misty ether spreads
Every ill the white man dreads;
Fiery fever’s thirsty thrill,
Fitful ague’s shivering chill!

Hark! I hear the traveller’s song,
As he winds the woods along;-
Christian, ’tis the song of fear;
Wolves are round thee, night is near,
And the wild thou dar’st to roam-
Think, ’twas once the Indian’s home!

Hither, sprites, who love to harm,
Wheresoe’er you work your charm,
By the creeks, or by the brakes,
Where the pale witch feeds her snakes,
And the cayman loves to creep,
Torpid, to his wintry sleep:
Where the bird of carrion flits,
And the shuddering murderer sits,
Lone beneath a roof of blood;
While upon his poisoned food,
From the corpse of him he slew
Drops the chill and gory dew.

Hither bend ye, turn ye hither,
Eyes that blast and wings that wither
Cross the wandering Christian’s way,
Lead him, ere the glimpse of day,
Many a mile of maddening error
Through the maze of night and terror,
Till the morn behold him lying
On the damp earth, pale and dying.
Mock him, when his eager sight
Seeks the cordial cottage-light;
Gleam then, like the lightning-bug,
Tempt him to the den that’s dug
For the foul and famished brood
Of the she wolf, gaunt for blood;
Or, unto the dangerous pass
O’er the deep and dark morass,
Where the trembling Indian brings
Belts of porcelain, pipes, and rings,
Tributes, to be hung in air,
To the Fiend presiding there!

Then, when night’s long labor past,
Wildered, faint, he falls at last,
Sinking where the causeway’s edge
Moulders in the slimy sedge,
There let every noxious thing
Trail its filth and fix its sting;
Let the bull-toad taint him over,
Round him let mosquitoes hover,
In his ears and eyeballs tingling,
With his blood their poison mingling,
Till, beneath the solar fires,
Rankling all, the wretch expires!

Song: Why Does Azure Deck The Sky?

Why does azure deck the sky?
‘Tis to be like thy looks of blue.
Why is red the rose’s dye?
Because it is thy blushes’ hue.
All that’s fair, by Love’s decree,
Has been made resembling thee!

Why is falling snow so white,
But to be like thy bosom fair!
Why are solar beams so bright?
That they may seem thy golden hair!
All that’s bright, by Love’s decree,
Has been made resembling thee!

Why are nature’s beauties felt?
Oh! ’tis thine in her we see!
Why has music power to melt?
Oh! because it speaks like thee.
All that’s sweet, by Love’s decree,
Has been made resembling thee!

Anacreontic

Press the grape, and let it pour
Around the board its purple shower:
And, while the drops my goblet steep,
I’ll think in woe the clusters weep.

Weep on, weep on, my pouting vine!
Heaven grant no tears, but tears of wine.
Weep on; and, as thy sorrows flow,
I’ll taste the luxury of woe.

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