The hills of Holy Ireland have palaces inside,
Where snugly in the winter the ‘little folk’ abide.
They come out in the summer when all is fresh and green,
We sometimes hear their music, but they are rarely seen.
For pleasure they go planting, thorn bushes here and there,
To cut them down or touch them the farmers never dare.
For fear the little people might cause them grief and woe,
Or crops might fail to ripen or else refuse to grow.
In raths and haunted places it is unwise to spy,
Upon them at their revels what time the moon is high.
One foolish man who did so, found to his dismay,
That somehow as he watched them a year had passed away.
But they will never harm you or bother you for spite,
If you leave them bread and milk upon the hob at night.
Hugh Alexander 1908