A poem by Sir Aubrey de Vere, father of the more famous Aubrey Thomas de Vere. The family estates were at Curraghchase, now a forest park, on the south side of the Shannon estuary and now best known as the home of Caroline Rigney, producer of some of Ireland’s best bacon. Sir Aubrey’s wife was one Mary Rice, of the Mount Trenchard family, one of whose members had a major role in the development of the Shannon in the 1840s.
Sunset on the Lower Shannon
How beautiful the tints of closing even!
The dark blue hills, the crimson glow of heaven,
The shadows purpling o’er the wat’ry scene,
Now streaked with gold — now tinged with tender green;
And yon bright path that burns along the deep,
Ere the sun sinks behind his western steep,
Soft fades the parting glory through the sky,
Commingling with the cool aerial dye;
While every cloud still kindling in the beam,
In mirrored beauty prints the waveless stream,
Light barques, with dusky sails, scarce seen to glide,
Bend their brown shadows o’er the glowing tide;
And hark! at intervals the sound of oars
Comes, faint from distance, to the silent shores,
Blent with the plaintive cadence of the song
Of boatmen, chanting as they drift along.
But see the radiant orb now sinks apace —
Gradual and slow, he stoops his glorious face;
And now — but half his swelling disk appears —
And now, how quickly gone! he scarcely rears
One burning point above the mountain’s head —
And now, the last expiring beam has fled.
October 20 1832
The “light barques” probably included some turf boats.
There are more poems by Sir Aubrey here.