Eonchs of Ruby/Sonnet. The Release of Fionnuala
THE RELEASE OF FIONNUALA.
Beside an island in an inland sea,
A virgin Swan came, in the time of spring,
Her Heaven-revealing, dying song to sing!
Veiled in the night's divine tranquillity,
Far in the reeds, where she had come to float,
There rose up from her silver-sounding throat
A whirlwind of cherubic melody,
Which hurricaned the silence of the night,
And rapt with an immortal ecstacy—
(Making them think it day in their delight)—
The birds within the solitudes—when right
To Heaven, transfigured, glorified, she went,
Leaving the world in mute astonishment—
Drowned in the deluge of her agony.
- "Fionnuala, the daughter of Lir, was, by some supernatural power, transformed into a swan, and condemned to wander, for many hundred years, over certain lakes and rivers in Ireland, till the coming of Christianity, when the sound of the first mass-bell was to be the signal of her release."