1 January 1916
Under the heading of "The Picture" we reproduce below a poem written some time before his death by Mr M. J. O’Boy, formerly teacher in Lakeview Boy’s School, Sligo.
It was sent to us by a dear friend of his, who was a college chum and spent many happy hours in his company after both had left the Alma Mater. The poem was published in the Guernsey Star some time ago. It is a mental picture of the thoughts of the deceased, who, two years ago, spent his summer holidays in Guernsey . There he met an officer to whom he became especially attached; in fact while there they were in the company of each other day and night and the links that bound were only sundered by the death of Mr. O’Boy some short time ago. The poem, which we reproduce, was dedicated to his friend:−
’Tis dear old Fermain bay
That rolls so far away,
But yet to me its mem’ry is quite near;
And those that round it lie
Beneath the sunny sky,
Are those of whom the very names are dear.
Its waters come and go
As they did long ago,
Ere you and I were e’en in swaddling clothes;
And they will come and go,
And ebb but to reflow,
When you and I beneath the sod repose.
The moral of my theme
Quite plainly may be seen,
It shows how short-
So let us, while we’re here,
Through year and year and year,
Be up to do whatever good we can.
M. J. O’BOY
8 January 1916
"In the Firelight."
Sometimes before the lamp is lighted—
For outside the moon proclaims ’tis growing late—
Within the cosy room the blinds are drawn,
A cheerful fire crackles in the homely grate;
’Tis then I love to watch the firelight,
And gaze into the flickering tongues now blue, now gold!
As dreamily I peer into the glowing embers,
Fond memory brings back to me the days of old.
Carelessly I watch the leaping shadows,
Flit to and fro upon the wall like ghosts;
And fancy often fashions wond’rous figures,
Whilst I sit along amid the haunted hosts!
Anon my dreams are light and airy,
Like the smoke that rises from the ruddy hearth;
As idly I gaze into the firelight,
Before the lamp is lighted and night rules the earth.
In the 1911 census Michael Joseph O'Boy lived with his parents, Patrick and Margaret, in Ballysumaghan between Riverstown and Collooney, County Sligo. His father was an RIC pensioner and caretaker born in Leitrim. His mother had been born in England. Michael was aged 26 and a national teacher. Mary O'Sullivan from Cork, a 21-
In National Schools of County Sligo the only Lakeview National School is at Tobernalt near Sligo town. This school was amalgamated with Carraroe NS in 1964. However Michael J. O'Boy is mentioned as having been a principal in Kilmorgan NS, Drumfin, Riverstown in the 1900s. This school was closed in 1913 at which time the principal appears to have been a John Hunt.
This poem is included in ERIN'S OWN, A Collection of Irish Song and Poetry, edited by B. L. O'Boy, who presumably was a relation, published in Westboro, Mass. in 1916.