IRISH SOLDIER BOY
At a cottage door one wintry night as the snow lay on the ground,
A youthful Irish soldier boy to the mountains he was bound.
His mother stood beside him saying, "You’ll win, my boy. Don’t fear,"
And with loving arms around his waist, she tied his bandoleer.
"Goodbye. God bless you, mother dear. I hope your heart won't pain,
But pray to God your soldier boy you soon will see again.
For when I'm out in the firing line, 'twill be a source of joy
To know that you're a mother proud of an Irish soldier boy."
When the fighting it was over and the flag of truce was raised,
The leaders ordered the fire to cease. All Ireland stood amazed.
His comrades came to the cottage door with a note from her pride and joy
Containing the news in sad detail of her Irish soldier boy.
"Goodbye. God bless you, mother dear. I'm dying a death so grand
From wounds received in action trying to free my native land.
But I know we'll meet in heaven above, in a land beyond the sky.
There you'll always be in company of your Irish soldier boy.
"A long farewell to Donegal, Kilkenny and Mayo,
Tipperary, Derry, and Tyrone, where the bushes green do grow,
And when at night you'll kneel and pray, 'twill be a source of joy
To know that you're remembering still your Irish soldier boy."
This is the complete version including all the verses.
Some singers omit the last verse, and it’s a pity.
"Irish Soldier Boy" was added to the Digital Tradition in 1998.