1Borlase, William Copeland. The Dolmens of Ireland Their Distribution, Structural Characteristics, (...). Vol. 3. London: Chapman & Hall, 1897. 837-39.
Borlase is only one of a number of authors who have attributed this poem to Jonathan Swift. However Conwell (1864) suggests that it may have been a different writer: "I have also heard these lines attributed to Miss Brooke, daughter of Henry Brooke (a pupil of Dr. Sheridan's), who was then living at Mullagh, about two miles from Quilca. As [the verses are] possessing local interest, I submit them; although I suppose they have been corrupted since they were originally written." (Conwell, Eugene A. "On Ancient Sepulchral Cairns on the Loughcrew Hills." Proceedings of the Royal Irish Academy 9 (1864-1866): 357-58). Conwell also quotes John O'Donovan (1836) as writing about the legend, "In giving the jump, she [the Hag] slipped and fell in the townland of Patrickstown, in the parish of Diamor, where she broke her neck. Here she was buried; and her grave was to be seen not many years ago in the field called "[Irish] Cul a mota (i.e. back of the moat), about two hundred perches to the east of the moat in that townland; but it is now destroyed."
A rather amusing notice regarding the legend of the Loughcrew Hag, apparently taken literally by the author, appeared in 1836 in a Dublin magazine: "In the background are three hills, Corstown, Newtown, and Kearn Of Cairn-bawn, which signifies the white-heap, so called from an immense heap of stones, said by the credulous and ignorant, to have been deposited there in days of other years, by an ancient witch, who, filling her apron, hopped over to Newtown- hill. and there dropped a sufficient quantity to raise another large heap-then taking a second hop to Corstown- hill, she succeeded in emptying her apron, and forming a third conspicuous heap, 'but unhappily broke her leg; here is shown a large stone, formed like a sofa-bed, which is called the witches-bed or chair, and contained a hole for her pipe. How absurd an idea, as tobacco is rather of modem introduction; yet such are the legends and stories prevalent over the entire country. There is another stone shown which, it is said, marks her burying place-there are circles of stones on one side of the cairn, and similar· circles on the top of Kearn, bawn. I have no doubt but some of the learned of the present time may be able to assign some rational cause for the erection of those rude heaps." (Eastforest, Arab (sic). "Loughcrew, County of Meath." The Dublin Penny Journal 4.192 (1836): 287.)
The full text of the poem, as quoted by Conwell:
"Twelve giant elks, trained to the car,
Had brought the warlike dame from far
Bengore—where reigned the dreadful war.
When morning dawned, the board was spread
With cresses, nuts, and berries red;
And Garvogue left her heather bed.
Black Ramor, Crewe, and glassy Sheel
Sent up the bream, the brae, and eel,
At mid-day for her ample meal.
Twelve haunches of the fattest elk,
Twelve measures of the richest milk,
Twelve breasts of eagles from the height,
Composed the meal for eve or night.
Ere Finn and Gall had raised the spear—
Ere Caolta chased the mountain deer—
Titanic Garvogue held her sway—
The feast at night—the chase by day.
Her pack just numbered threescore ten—
No fleeter ever crossed a glen:
Ked Spidogue, with her broad, full, chest,
And Isogue, round ribbed, and the best.
Determined now her tomb to build,
Her ample skirt with stones she filled,
And dropped a heap on Carnmore;
Then stepped one thousand yards, to Loar,
And dropped another goodly heap;
Gained Carnbeg; and on its height
Displayed the wonders of her might.
And when approached death's awful doom,
Her chair was placed within the womb
Of hills whose tops with heather bloom."