Lonely I sit by Killary Bay;
My thoughts fly back across the years,
To when, my youth of spirit gay,
As yet immune from cares and fears.
I, with companions, careless, free,
Lived here each hour in ecstasy.
The ancient hills unaltered stand;
The sea-mist curls round Muilrea;
The tide creeps sinuous o’er the strand,
-Soft sighs the wind through loved Ashleagh,
The grey seals snort, and dive and rise,
The red-shank runs, the seagull flies.
Where are the happy friends I’ve known?
Alas! They are not here today;
A visitor, I sit alone.
Some o’er the sea are far away;
Some in the quiet churchyard lie;
The sad waves croon their lullaby.
Mavourneen of the golden hair,
The laughing eyes, radiant warm;
My boyhood’s dream: I thought thee fair;
Your kindly smile my youth did charm.
You left for scenes far, far away:
Your beauty moulds in foreign clay.
The old folk of my youth are gone,
A generation new has grown:
Save for a few who linger on,
Vanished are all that I’ve known.
I, too, must soon be on my way,
Goodbye, my lovely Killary Bay!