Irish Goodbye

by Rachel Hillary

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A collection of some of my favourite irish folk songs

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released March 16, 2013

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Rachel Hillary Manchester, UK

fairy folk music
have a whiskey

rachelhillary.co.uk

@kittenhillary

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Track Name: The Butcher Boy
In Dublin City
where I did dwell
a butcher boy
I loved right well
he courted me
my life away
and now with me
he will not stay

I wish I wish
I wish in vain
I wish I was
a maid again
but a maid again
I ne'er can be
till apples grow
on an ivy tree

she went upstairs
to go to bed
and calling to
her mother said
bring me a chair
till I sit down
and a pen and ink
till I write down

he went upstairs
and the door he broke
and found her hanging
from her rope
he took his knife
and cut her down
and in her pocket
these words he found:

"oh, make my grave
large, wide and deep
put a marble stone
at my head and feet
and in the middle
a turtle dove
so the world may know
i died of love".
Track Name: The Green fields of France
Well how do you do young Willie McBride?
do you mind if I sit down here by your graveside
and rest for a while 'neath the warm summer sun
I've been walkin' all day and I'm nearly done
I see by your gravestone you were only nineteen
when you joined the great fallen of 1916
Well I hope you died quick and I hope you died clean
or young Willie McBride was it slow and obscene?

Did they beat the drum slowly did they play the fife lowly,
did they sound the death march as they lowered you down
did the band play the last post and chorus,
did the pipes play the "Flowers of the Forest"

And did you leave a wife or a sweetheart behind
In some faithful heart is your memory enshrined?
And, though you died back in 1916,
To that loyal heart are you forever 19?
Or are you a stranger without even a name,
Forever enshrined behind some glass pane,
In an old photograph, torn and tattered and stained,
And fading to yellow in a brown leather frame?

Did they beat the drum slowly did they play the fife lowly,
did they sound the death march as they lowered you down
did the band play the last post and chorus,
did the pipes play the "Flowers of the Forest"

The sun's shining down on these green fields of France;
The warm wind blows gently, and the red poppies dance.
The trenches have vanished long under the plow;
No gas and no barbed wire, no guns firing now.
But here in this graveyard that's still No Man's Land
The countless white crosses in mute witness stand
To man's blind indifference to his fellow man.
And a whole generation who were butchered and damned.


Did they beat the drum slowly did they play the fife lowly,
did they sound the death march as they lowered you down
did the band play the last post and chorus,
did the pipes play the "Flowers of the Forest"


And I can't help but wonder, oh Willie McBride,
Do all those who lie here know why they died?
Did you really believe them when they told you "The Cause?"
Did you really believe that this war would end wars?
Well the suffering, the sorrow, the glory, the shame
The killing, the dying, it was all done in vain,
For Willie McBride, it all happened again,
And again, and again, and again, and again.

Did they beat the drum slowly did they play the fife lowly,
did they sound the death march as they lowered you down
did the band play the last post and chorus,
did the pipes play the "Flowers of the Forest"
Track Name: Forget-me-nots / Weile weile waile
Here are the original lyrics....

There was an old woman and she lived in the woods, weile weile waile.
There was an old woman and she lived in the woods, down by the river Saile.

She had a baby three months old, weile weile waile.
She had a baby three months old, down by the river Saile.

She had a penknife, long and sharp, weile weile waile.
She had a penknife, long and sharp, down by the river Saile.

She stuck the penknife in the baby’s heart, weile weile waile.
She stuck the penknife in the baby’s heart, down by the river Saile.

There were three loud knocks come a’knocking on the door, weile weile waile.
There were three loud knocks come a’knocking on the door, down by the river Saile.

There were two policemen and a Special Branch man, weile weile waile.
There were two policemen and a Special Branch man, down by the river Saile.

They took her away and they put her in the jail, weile weile waile.
They took her away and they put her in the jail, down by the river Saile.

They put a rope around her neck, weile weile waile.
They put a rope around her neck, down by the river Saile.

They pulled the rope and she got hung, weile weile waile.
They pulled the rope and she got hung, down by the river Saile.

And that was the end of the woman in the woods, weile weile waile.
And that was the end of the baby too, down by the river Saile.
Track Name: The Lakes of Pontchartrain
It was one bright March morning, I bid New Orleans Adieu.
And I took the road to Jackson Town, my fortune to renew
I cursed all foreign money, no credit could I gain
Which filled my heart with a longing for, the Lakes of Ponchartrain

I stepped on board of a railroad car, beneath the morning sun
I rode the rods till evening and I laid me down again
All strangers there no friends to me 'til a dark girl towards me came
And I fell in love with the Creole Girl, by the Lakes of Ponchartrain

I said Me pretty Creole Girl, me money here's no good,
If it weren't for the alligators, I'd sleep out there in the wood
You're welcome here kind stranger, our house is very plain
but we never turn a stranger out, by the lakes of pontchartrain

She took me into her mammy's house and treated me right well
The hair upon her shoulders in jet black ringlets fell
To try and paint here beauty, I'm sure 'twould be in vain
So handsome was my Creole girl by the Lakes of Ponchartrain

I asked her if she'd marry me, she said that ne'er could be
For she had got a lover and he was far at sea
She said that she would wait for him and true she would remain
Till he'd return to his Creole girl, on the Lakes of Ponchartrain

It's fare thee well, me bonnie ole girl, I'll never see you more
I'll never forget your kindness in the cottage by the shore
And at each social gathering, a flowing bowl I'll drain
And I'll drink a health to my Creole girl, by the Lakes of Ponchartrain
Track Name: The Mountains of Mourne
Oh Mary this London's a wonderful sight
there's people here working by day and by night
They don't sow potatoes nor barley nor wheat
But there's gangs of them digging for gold in the street
At least when I asked them that's what I was told
So I just took a hand at this digging for gold
But for all that I found there I might as well be
Where the mountains of mourne sweep down to the sea
.
I believe that when writing a wish you expressed
As to how the fine ladies of London were dressed
Well if you believe me, when asked to a ball
They don't wear a top on their dresses at all
Oh, I've seen them myself, and you couldn't in truth
Say if they were bound for a ball or a bath.
Don't be starting them fashions now Mary Macree
Where the mountains of Mourne sweep down to the sea

.
You remember young Diddy McClaren of course
Well he's over here with the rest of the force
I met him today, I was crossing the strand
And he stopped the whole street with one wave of his hand
And there we stood talking of days that are gone
While the whole town of London looked on,
But for all these great powers he's wishful like me
To be back where dark Moume sweeps down to the sea.
.
There's beautiful girls here - Oh, never you mind
With beautiful shapes Nature never designed
And lovely complexions, all roses and cream
But let me remark with regard to the same,
That if at those roses you venture to sip
The colours might all come away on your lip
So I'll wait for the wild rose that's waiting for me
Where the mountains of Mourne sweep down to the sea