You rambling boys of pleasure, give ear to these lines I write,
Although I’m a rover, and in rambling I take great delight.
I cast my mind on a handsome girl who ofttimes she does me slight,
But my mind is never easy till my true love is in my sight.
Down by yon flow’ry gardens, where me and my true love do meet,
I took her in my arms, and unto her gave kisses sweet
She bade take love easy, just as the leaves fall from the tree.
But I being young and foolish, with my own true love could not agree.
And the second time I met my love, I thought that her heart was surely mine.
But as the season changes, my darling girl has changed her mind
Gold is the root of evil, although it bears a glistening hue
Causes many the lad and the lass to part, though their hearts, like mine, be e’er so true.
Sure I wish I was in Belfast town, and my true love along with me.
With money in my pocket to keep us in good company.
Liquor to be plenty, a flowing glass on every side,
Hard fortune would ne’er daunt me, for I am young and the world is wide.
“You Rambling Boys of Pleasure was learned from the singing of Len Graham and the late Joe Holmes from Co. Antrim, and also from Ian Stevenson of Derry, to whom many thanks . This is the song that was half remembered by W.B Yeats and rewritten by him as ‘ Down by the Sally Gardens’.” – Andy Irvine
Also known as “I Wish I Was In Belfast Town”.