THREE GRAINS OF CORN.
Give me three grains of corn, mother, only three grains of corn,
It will keep the little life I have, till the coming of the morn ;
I am dying of hunger and cold, mother, dying of hunger and cold,
And, oh, the agony of such a death, the half was never told.
It has gnawed like a wolf at my heart, mother, a wolf that is fierce for blood,
All the livelong day and the night beside, gnawing for lack of food ;
I dreamed of bread In my sleep, mother, and the sight was heaven to see,
I woke with an eager famishing lip, but you had no bread for me.
How could I look to you, mother, how could I look to you,
For bread to give to your starving boy, when you were starving too;
For I read the famine in your cheek, and in your eye so wild,
And I felt it in your bony hand, as you laid it on your child.
The queen has lands and gold, mother, the queen has lands and gold,
While you are forced to your empty breast, a famishing babe to hold ;
A babe that is dying of want, mother, as I am dying now.
With a look of woe in its sunken eye, and misery on its brow.
What has poor Ireland done, mother, what has poor Ireland done,
That the world looks on and see? us starve, perishing one by one!
Do the men of England care not, mother, the great men and the high,
For the suffering sons of Erin's Isle, whether they live or dio ?
There is many a brave heart here, mother, dying of hunger and cold,
While only across the channel, are many who roll in gold ;
There are rich and proud men there, mother, with wondrous wealth to view,
And the crumbs that drop in their hall to-night, would give life to me and you.
Come nearer to my side, mother, come nearer to my side.
And hold rac fondly, as you held my father when ho died;
Quick, for I cannot see you, mother, my breath Is almost gone,
Mother, dear mother, ere I die, give me three grains of corn.