[From Mannin #8]
From Miss ISABEL CANNELL, Vancouver, B.C.Since I left our dear little Island, I have seen much of Canada, Vancouver, and the Sandwich Islands, and have just spent six months in New Zealand. Wherever I have been I have looked up Manx. folk, and have everywhere found my fellow-countrymen flourishing, and kind and hospitable to a degree. It has been an immense pleasure to see them all. I stayed for three weeks with Mr. and Mrs. Moore at Makauri, and had the most enjoyable time. I also had a very pleasant visit at Mr. Corkills at Wellington. My host introduced me to many Manx people, and I was his guest at the send-off that he gave to the Manx lads of the New Zealand Expeditionary Force, when Mr. Moore presented the golden Trie Cassyn to each of them. I think I told you that Mr. Jeffcott (son of the late High-Bailiff of Castletown) of Esquimalt, B.C., said to me, What a link MANNIN is between the Homeland and exiles far away. I have been so glad to find how many MANNIN subscribers are abroad, and how they enjoy it.
From Mr. J. R. Moore, Ashburton, N.Z.A short time ago I had several visits from Mr. T. E. Corkhill, President of the Wellington Manx Society, when we discussed home affairs, and renewed the acquaintance of our young days. Mr. Corkill recited a piece of poetry by the Rev. Edward Priestland on Billy Teare. I had not known it before, it is really beautiful. I knew all the Priestland family well, and spent many happy times at the Rectory or the Glebe, as we were accustomed to say. I have many a time heard dear old Billy preach. Mr. Corkill kindly lent me a booklet of poems, Juan y Phericks Journey, by Mr. W. W. Gill, which seems to me characteristic of Chalse y Killey and Thom Delby. It is grand. Before the visit to Ashburton, Mr. Corkill wrote saying he heard one of my boys was in camp, and wanted his address. My boy Alf wrote home saying that Mr. Corkill had requested him to hunt up all the Manx boys in camp and forward their names to him. Then they all received an invitation to dinner, with arrangements for leave from the commandant. Arrived, they were welcomed by about fifty Manx folk from various parts of the Dominion, including Mr. Moore of Makauri (son of the late High-Bailiff Moore, of Peel), who had made a journey of one hundred and twenty miles to be present. A splendid repast was partaken of after introductions and interesting cooishes, and a pleasant evenings entertainment followed. When home on sick-leave, Alf received a nice letter inviting him to spend, if possible, a few days at Makauri, also informing him that Mr. Moore intended to present the boys with the Trie Cassyn, which they duly received on board before departure.
From Mrs. FISHER CLAGUE, ManchesterI think the last number of MANNIN delightful, and I hope that you will receive special support from all the Manx Societies abroad, so that MANNIN may continue to flourish, and that there may be no fear of its coming to a premature end During the War, or after.
From MR. T. E CORKILL, President of the Manx Society, Wellington, N.Z. -You made reference to Mr. J. R. Moore of Ashburton. When your note arrived I was staying for a few weeks in that town, and spent two or three evenings with Mr. Moore, whose acquaintance I made a few years ago. soon after he came to New Zealand. Re-made, more likely, for though neither of us remember the other, we were small boys in Ramsey at the same time-nearly fifty years agoand our recollections contain many of the same incidents and people. One of his sons was in camp near Wellington at the same time, and used frequently to drop in at my house. He is now in France, no doubt, though possibly he is in England, as he belongs to our Engineers, and a good many of our men in that branch of the service have gone to England. My eldest son who is an Engineer officer, went from Egypt to England, and on his first day there, was asked by a chaplain friend to get some of his men to help out of some difficulties a lady who, with her own servants, was running a canteen under Y.M.C.A. auspices at one of the camps on Salisbury Plain. She is Mrs. Mylrea, widow of a Colonel Mylrea, and at once claimed racial kinship with the New Zealander with the Manx name.
From JACK SHEARD, R.N.R., H.M. Highflyer.- Just a line to let you know we are still on top and doing our best. I have not had the pleasure of a run home yet since we left home in August, 1914. but however we are all happy. I am enclosing you a piece of my many scraps of poetry, which I have composed since I have been away. I thought you would like to see it, being from a Manx sailor. I often wonder what our little Island looks like in war-time. All best wishes in your good work.
Away in the dear old Homeland, my thoughts will oft wander to thee,
And I picture the dear, sweet faces that are anxiously watching for me;
For I know that a welcome is waiting for the absent one over the sea,
Away in the dear old Homeland. I know they are watching for me.
Away in the dear old Homeland, I know there is sorrow to-day,
And hearts that are torn with anguish for the absent noes far away;
For alas, grave dangers await them, when the angry billows rise high,
But we know that the Oceans Ruler looks down from His place in the sky.
And with His strog arm Hell protect them, as long as they fight for the Right;
And lend them His Infinite Courage to overcome all with His might.
And if no more they return we know that Himself He awaits
Our loved ones, and gives them His blessing when they enter the beautiful gates.