The Penal Laws very nearly destroyed Ireland's identity. These crushing, anti-Catholic statutes ensured that all the remaining native nobility would flee their ancestral land. After the 'Wild Geese' (the native nobility) fled an anonymous poem was written:
What shall we do for timber?
The last of the woods is down
Kilcash and the house of its glory
And the bell of the house are gone
The spot where that lady waited
Who shamed all women for grace
When earls came sailing to greet her
And Mass was said in place
My grief and my affliction
Your gates are taken away
Your avenue needs attention
Goats in the garden stray
The courtyard's filled with water
And the great earls where are they?
The earls, the lady, the people
Beaten into the clay
Kilcash, its ruined tower still stands against the Tipperary sky. The 21st century, prophesied Malraux, will be spiritual or it will not be. If our civilization is to be saved, which as St. Patrick would say may pass, "in a moment like a cloud or smoke that scattered by the wind," if we are to be saved, it will not be by Romans - the rich and powerful, who run things their way and must always accrue more because they instinctively believe that there will never be enough to go around - if we are to be saved, it will not be by Romans, but saints.
Erin Go Bragh