Mitchelstown Caverns

Gerald Griffin

Grimly it frowned when first with shuddering mind
We saw the far-famed Cavern's darkling womb,
And for that vault of silence and of gloom
Left the fair day and smiling world behind.
But what bright wonder hailed our eyes erelong!
The crystal well, the sparry curtained dome,
The sparkling shafts that propped that caverned home,
And vaults that turned the homeliest sounds to song.
O, this, I thought, is sure a symbol plain
Of that undreaded death the holy die,
Stern at the first and withering to the view;
But past that gate of darkness and of pain,
What scenes of unimagined rapture lie,
Rich with elysian wealth and splendor ever new.