Rebels (Easter Rising, Dublin 1916)





‘but the fools, the fools, the fools! — they have left us our Fenian dead, and, while Ireland holds these graves, Ireland unfree shall never be at peace.*


I do not wish to speak in whispers,

About those men of Easter Week,

They shed their blood for my land,

And its there, their souls still sleep.


They were soldiers, poets and dreamers,

Responding to that ancient call;

They did not seek to conquer,

Just reclaim what was their own.


Outside the main Post Office,

Pearse, read out the words of war,

The Green Flag, was unfurled again;

A new generations pride restored.


They stood against an Empire,

On which the Sun still never set,

And struck a blow for Liberty,

Defiant – even in death.


They were taken out, when it was over;

Connelly strapped in a chair,

The volley from the firing squads,

Awoke those, the before refused to hear.


Some called their cause a failure,

I don’t believe that to be true,

It was the sacrificial act,

So that the flame, could be renewed.


In every country of this world,

An Irishman lies dead.

He fought for dreams of others;

And for those his blood was shed.

Many nations he helped set free,

While his own land lay in the dust;

And Caitlín** was left widowed –

Raped by invaders lust.


* Patrick Pearse’ Graveside Oration of Jeremiah O’Donovan Rossa 1915

** Caitlín Ní Uallacháin, literally, (“Kathleen, daughter of Houlihan”) is a mythical symbol and emblem of Irish nationalism found in literature and art, sometimes representing Ireland as a personified woman.

4 thoughts on “Rebels (Easter Rising, Dublin 1916)

  1. VijayNair

    A few good men. A magnificent gesture. A day when,as Yeats observed, ”a terrible beauty ” was ” born.” Fingleton ‘s verse exquisitely creates a perfect ambience for the events that unfolded.An excellent piece of writing. For those interested in this turbulent period of Irish history, a glance at Yeats’ ”Easter, 1916” would be richly rewarding.


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