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The Boys of Barr na Sráide (Seigerson Clifford 1936)

(Arr. N. Parsons/G. Dunne)

Oh the town it climbs the mountain and looks out upon the sea
And sleeping time or waking, tis there I long to be
To walk again that kindly street, the place where life began
And the Boys of Barr na Sráide went hunting for the wren.

With cudgels stoud we roamed about to hunt the Droileen
We searched for birds in every furze, from Letter to Doneen
We sang for joy beneath the sky, life held no print or plan
And we Boys of Barr na Sráide, a-hunting for the wren.

And when the hills were bleeding, and the rifles were aflame
To the rebel homes of Kerry, the Saxon stranger came
But the boys of dared the Auxies, and who beat the Black and Tan
Were the Boys of Barr na Sráide, a-hunting for the Wren.

And here's a toast to them tonight, the lads who laughed with me
By the groves of Carhan River, or the slopes of Beenatee
John Dawley and Batt Andy and the Sheehans, Con and Dan
And the Boys of Barr na Sráide who hunted for the wren.

And now they toil on foreign soil, where they have gone their way
Deep in the heart of London town, or over on Broadway
And I am left to sing their deeds and to praise them while I can
Those Boys of Barr na Sráide, who hunted for the wren.

And when the wheel of life runs down and peace comes over me
O lay me down in that old town, between the hills and sea
I'll take my sleep in those green fields, the place my life began
When the Boys of Barr na Sráide went hunting for the wren.

Notes:

Wren is pronounced Wran

Auxies were the Auxiliary army during the War of Independence in Ireland around 16-19

Barr na Sráide (top of the street) is the name of a street in Cahirsiveen, Co. Kerry

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