Proclamation, by Angela Carr

on the eve of the Marriage Referendum

In the name of God and the dead, she receives
her nationhood, her children, her flag, her freedom:
trained her secret revolution

through open, patiently perfected, discipline;
she waited for the right moment to reveal—
that moment supported by her exiled children—

relying on her own strength she strikes
the right to ownership unfettered,
sovereign and indefeasible.

Long, that right, foreign, not extinguished,
nor can ever be extinguished, by destruction:
every generation asserts its freedom;

the last hundred years have arms, standing
again, the face of the world republic –
independent, we, our lives, the lives of cause:

freedom from welfare and its exaltation,
the entitled-to allegiance
of every religious liberty;

equal, and equal all, declare to pursue
the whole, and all of its parts, cherishing
equally and oblivious of difference,

alien, the past, our arms opportune –
a permanent representative – whole,
by the suffrages all men and women

constituted will administer,
civil, and in trust place cause
under blessing, invoke arms, pray no-one

serve dishonour by humanity rapine;
in this valour, the readiness to sacrifice
proves worthy: destiny, it is called.

(derived from the text of the Proclamation of the Irish Republic, 1916)

Angela Carr