The Valley Of Knockanure

Bryan MacMahon

You may sing and speak of old Easter week
And the heroes of ninety-eight
Of the Fenian men who roamed the glen
In victory or defeat
Their names on history’s page are told
Their memory will endure
But this song was sung of our darling sons
In the Valley of Knockanure

There was Walsh and Lyons and the Dalton boys
They were young and in their prime
They rambled to a lonely spot
Where the Black and Tans did hide
The Republic bold they did uphold
Tho’ outlawed on the moor
And side by side they fought and died
In the Valley of Knockanure

It was on a neighbouring hillside
We listened in hushed dismay
In every house, in every town
A maiden knelt to pray
They’re closing in around them now
With rifle fire so sure
And Lyons is dead and Dalton’s down
In the Valley of Knockanure

But e’er the guns could seal his fate
Young Walsh had broken thro’
With a prayer to God he spurned the sod
As against the hill he flew
The bullets tore his flesh in two
Yet he cried with voice so sure
“Revenge I’ll get for my comrade’s death
In the Valley of Knockanure”

The summer sun is setting now
Behind the field and lea
The pale moonlight is shining bright
Far off beyond Tralee
The dismal stars and the clouds afar
Are darkening o’er the moor
And the banshee cried when our heroes died
In the Valley of Knockanure

This fine ballad refers to the Black and Tan War of 1921.