The Mall of Lismore

Come all you fair maids take a warning
And it’s never a soldier take wed
Or else like myself you’ll be mourning
Far better live single instead

For once I was young and light hearted
But now all my pleasures are o’er
Since my darling has gone and he’s left me
All alone in the Mall of Lismore

As I went a walking one morning
Down by the sweet banks of the Finn
I met with a dashing young soldier
And soon my poor heart he did win

I thought him both handsome and charming
His features I ne’er saw before
But alas has gone and he’s left me
All alone in the Mall of Lismore

To Dublin his regiment was ordered
And my soldier he didn’t take long
In picking a dispute with his Sergeant
And it was for this misfortune was wronged

He was handcuffed and tied with a halter
And his back with the lash was made sore
And that was the reason he left me
All alone in the Mall of Lismore

Farewell to the banks of Blackwater
And adieu to my parents and home
Since my father her disowned his own daughter
In some foreign valleys I’ll roam

May he always be blessed with good fortune
And I hope that I’ll meet him once more
But alas has gone and he’s left me
All alone in the Mall of Lismore

Traditional

“The Mall of Lismore” is a song written in the first person—and as a warning to “other fair maids”—by a girl who was disowned by her father for falling in love with a “dashing young soldier” who, in turn, leaves her “all alone on the Mall of Lismore, when to Dublin his regiment was ordered”. Irvine sings and plays harmonica & mandolin, accompanied on harpsichord by Tríona Ní Dhomhnaill.

Lyrics submitted by Sean Laffey. “Here are the lyrics to Mall of Lismore, from the 1977 The Gathering album. These will be printed in Irish Music Magazine this coming October along with a commentary.”

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