l wish I was by that dim lake


I wish I was by that dim lake
Where sinful souls their farewell take
Of this vain world and halfway lie
In death’s cold shadow, ere they die
There, there, far from thee
Deceitful world, my home should be
Where come what might of gloom and pain
False hope should ne’er deceive again

The lifeless sky, the mournful sound
Of unseen waters falling round
The dry leaves quivering o’er my head
Like man, unquiet even when dead
These, ay, these should wean
My soul from life’s deluding scene
And turn each thought, each wish I have
Like willows, downward towerds the grave

As they who to their couch at night
Would welcome sleep, first quench the light
So must the hopes that keep this breast
Awake, be quenched, ere it can rest
Cold, cold, my heart must grow
Unchanged by either joy or woe
Like freezing founts, where all that’s thrown
Within their current turns to stone


This song is about St. Patrick’s Purgatory at Station Island in Lough Derg where pilgrims assemble to spend three days and nights of fasting and prayer.

Song Clip




Thomas Moore