Green fields around Ferbane


I rue the day I sailed away from the dear old Isle of Green
On a foreign strand where I now do stand and the deep seas roll between
In my dreams I fly where I roamed a boy e’er my worldly cares began
My vision shows where the Brosna flows in the green fields around Ferbane

Oh my heart does sink when I stop and think of the joys that are mine no more
When I used to roam on my way from school through the woods of old Kilmore
My only quest was the wild bird’s nest in the oak tree’s lordly span
Where I spent the hours in the leafy bowers of the green fields around Ferbane

In my dreams I see that old ivy tree, in its shade I oft lay down
Ballyvoura Grove, where I used to rove, to gaze on the dear old town
Once again I dream of the old mill stream where the musical waters ran
Were it only real, how happy I’d fee in the green fields around Ferbane

And on Gallen Green where I oft have been, all lovers know it well
Those trees that creak, if they could speak, what a wondrous tale they’d tell
Of trysts unkept and the hopes that wept that made many a lovelorn man
Sail over the seas and leave scenes like these in the green fields around Ferbane

In that dear old town ‘neath its roofs of brown, I spent many a happy night
When I rambled away with my comrades gay till the morning dawned full bright
Those old pals I see with their smiles of glee as the years I backward span
There are three or four I’ll see no more in the green fields around Ferbane

The lust for gold it soon grows cold as the heart grows sad within
Fond memories burn while I ever yearn for the good times that might have been
I’ll turn my face from this awful place just as quickly as I can
I’ll sail for home never more to roam from the green fields around Ferbane


This Offaly song was composed by John Doyle of Ferbane. It deals with love of his local place and with emigration. Although John never left Ferbane, he used his imagination well.

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