The Jackets Green

Michael Scanlon

When I was a maiden fair and young
On the pleasant banks of the Lee
No bird that in the greenwood sung
Was half so blithe and free
My heart near leapt with flying feet
No love sang me her Queen
Till down the glen rode Sarsfield’s men
And they wore the Jackets Green

No hoarded wealth did my love own
Save the good sword that he bore
But I loved him for his self alone
And the colours bright he wore
For had he come in England’s red
To make me England’s Queen
I’d rove the high green hills instead
For the sake of Irish Green

When Sarsfield sailed away I wept
I heard the wild ochone
I felt then dead like the men who slept
‘Neath the fields of Garryowen
While Ireland held my Donal blessed
No wild sea rolled between
Till I would fold him to my breast
All robed in Irish Green

I saw the Shannon’s purple tide
Roll by the Irish town
As I stood in the breach by Donal’s side
When England’s flag went down
And now it glows as it seeks the skies
Like a blood-red curse between
I weep, but ’tis not the women’s sighs
That will raise the Irish Green

Oh Ireland, sad’s thy lonely soul
And loud beats the winter seas
But sad and high the wild waves roll
From hearts that break for thee
Yet grief shall come to our heartless foes
Their thrones in the dust be seen
But Irish maids love none but those
Who wear the Jackets Green

As sung by The Wolfe Tones.