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Donemana, A Poem by John Kee, Donagheady Parish, Co. Tyrone, Northern Ireland

Extracted from the Londonderry Sentinel, May 22, 1943
Transcribed, Compiled and Submitted by
Len Swindley, Melbourne, Australia



[Lines written by the late John Kee, c1836-1917, Larch Hill, Donemana]

You remember Donemana,

The old castle on the hill,

The bald crags of Binelly,

Rising high above the hill.


The wooded slopes from Earlsgift,

To Mountcastle’s ancient walls,

Tullyard’s green holmes and high lands,

And the Corby-linn’s deep falls.


Old Silverbrook, high-guarded,

So quiet and so grand;

With the ivy strings in vista,

Like a glen in fairyland.


You remember the old meeting-house

So primitive its look,

Yet hallowed to our feelings,

Like a worn old favourite book.


Bible lessons on the Sabbath,

Sacred melody and psalm,

And the sermon breathing eloquent,

A rapture and a balm


You remember summer evenings,

How sweet it was to roam,

With the calm of nature o’er us,

By the bridge of the Downholme.


When the trout leapt in the streams,

And the birds sang in the trees,

And our hearts heard spirit music,

Like the sobbing of the seas.


All those dear old spots of beauty,

All the pure delight of yore,

And in memory set like diamonds,

Which will sparkle evermore