The Problem Solved.

Hoorah ! we have found out the secret at last,1
And our old Irish troubles are over and past :2
We have solved the hard problem that proved so bewildering,3
And discovered that Ireland’s—a country of children !4
Poor innocent babes ! they’ve been sadly misused :5
We’ve indulged them in freedoms we should have refused.6
What could we expect but a train of disasters,7
When we suffered mere children to be their own masters ?8
We’ve allowed them to bid and to bargain for farms ;9
To vote at elections, and carry firearms ;10
They’ve been suffered and summoned to sit upon juries,11
And, of course, they have acted like fools or like furies.12
In England we watch o’er the helpless and young,13
To take care that their elders shall do them no wrong ;14
But a much wider circuit our care must engage,15
When a whole population is found under age.16
All our plans must be changed : we must now take in hand17
Every contract that’s made about labour or land.18
Every man that’s removed, though with no right to stay,19
Must be paid something handsome for going away.20
Then as Ireland has long been a mere rabbit-warren,21
And there’s no way to make early marriages barren,22
We must next, if the good of these minors is meant,23
Forbid them to marry without our consent.24
O Erin mavourneen ! och cushla mo chree !25
First flower of the earth, and first gem of the sea !26
With what Irish ideas your English abettors27
Are now making you free by these newly-found fetters !28

Note.—Is the way-going payment in question a revival of the old Celtic usage
of Deoch-an-dorais—the door-drink, or stirrup-cup, that was due to every part
ing guest ?