The Green Fields Of Canada

Farewell to the groves of shillelagh and shamrock,
Farewell to the girls of old Ireland all round.
May their hearts be as merry as ever I would wish them
When far away across the ocean I’m bound.

My father is old and my mother quite feeble,
To leave their own country it grieves them full sore.
Oh, the tears down their cheeks in great drops they are rolling
To think they must die upon a foreign shore.

But what matters to me where my bones may be buried
If in peace and contentment I can spend my life.
Oh, the green fields of Canada they’re daily a-blooming;
That I’ll find an end to my misery and strife.

So it’s pack up your sea stores and consider no longer,
Ten dollars a week isn’t very bad pay;
With no taxes or tithes to devour up your wages
When you’re on the green fields of America.

The sheep run unsheared and the land’s gone to rushes;
The handyman’s gone and the winder of creels.
Away o’er the ocean go journeyman tailors
And fiddlers who flaked out the old mountain reels.

But sure I mind the time when old Ireland was flourishing,
When lots of our tradesmen did work for good pay.
But since out manufacturies have crossed the Atlantic,
Sure, now we must follow to America.

So it’s pack up your sea stores and consider no longer,
Ten dollars a week isn’t very bad pay;
With no taxes or tithes to devour up your wages
When you’re on the green fields of America.

And it’s now to conclude and to finish my ditty;
If ever friendless Irishmen chances my way:
With the best in the house I will greet him and welcome
At home on the green fields of America.

So it’s pack up your sea stores and consider no longer,
Ten dollars a week isn’t very bad pay;
With no taxes or tithes to devour up your wages
When you’re on the green fields of America.

 Traditional
“The Green Fields of Canada” is another song Irvine learned from the repertoire of Paddy Tunny. “Unlike most emigration songs, the émigré in this one appears to believe he has done the right thing”.
“…and though I had a heavy cold , singing it, I love the sound of the flute organ we had hired on The Green Fields of Canada.” Andy
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