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Listen to the Song: Skibberreen

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Skibberreen Oh father dear, I oft-times hear you speak of Erin's isle Her lofty hills, her valleys green, her mountains rude and wild They say she is a lovely land wherein a saint might dwell So why did you abandon her, the reason to me tell. Oh son, I loved my native land with energy and pride Till a blight came o'er the praties; my sheep, my cattle died My rent and taxes went unpaid, I could not them redeem And that's the cruel reason why I left old Skibbereen. Oh well do I remember that bleak December day The landlord and the sheriff came to take us all away They set my roof on fire with their cursed English spleen I heaved a sigh and bade goodbye to dear old Skibbereen. Your mother too, God rest her soul, fell on the stony ground She fainted in her anguish seeing desolation 'round She never rose but passed away from life to immortal dream She found a quiet grave, me boy, in dear old Skibbereen. And you were only two years old and feeble was your frame I could not leave you with my friends for you bore your father's name I wrapped you in my cóta mór in the dead of night unseen I heaved a sigh and bade goodbye to dear old Skibbereen. Oh father dear, the day will come when in answer to the call All Irish men of freedom stern will rally one and all I'll be the man to lead the band beneath the flag of green And loud and clear we'll raise the cheer, Revenge for Skibbereen!

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