The Green Fields of France
1) Well, how do you do young Willie McBride?
Do you mind if I sit hear down by your graveside,
And rest for a while ‘neath the warm summer sun.
I’ve been working all day and I’m nearly done.
I can see by your gravestone you were only nineteen
when you joined the great fallen in nineteen sixteen.
Well I hope you died quick, and I hope you died clean,
Oh Willie McBride, was it slow and obscene?
Did they beat the drum slowly, did they play the fife lowly,
did they sound the death march, as they lowered you down?
Did the bands play the last post and chorus?
Did the pipes play the flowers of the forest?
2.) And did you leave a wife or sweetheart behind
In some faithful heart is your memory enshrined,
Although you died back in nineteen sixteen
In some faithful heart are you forever nineteen?
Or are you a stranger without even a name
Enclosed now forever behind a glass frame
In an old photograph torn, battered and stained
And faded to yellow in a brown leather frame.
3.) Now see how the sun shines o’er the green field of France
There’s a warm summer breeze makes the red poppies dance,
And see how the sun shines from under the clouds
There’s no gas or barbed wire, there’s no guns firing now.
But here in this graveyard it’s still no-man’s land
The countless white crosses in mute witness stand
To man’s blind indifference to his fellow man
To a whole generation who were butchered and damned.
4.) Now young Willie McBride, I can’t help wonder why
Do all those who lie here know why did they die.
And did they believe when they answered the call
Did they really believe that this war would end wars.
Well the sorrow, the suffering, the glory the pain,
The killing, the dying they were all done in vain
For young Willie McBride it all happened again
And again and again and again and again.