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The Recruiting Sergeant

Seamus O'Farrell
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OriginalLa versione cantata da Dominic Behan / Doiminic Ó Beacháin
THE RECRUITING SERGEANTTHE RECRUITING SERGEANT
As I was walking down the road,
A feeling fine and larky oh!
A recruiting Sergeant came up to me,
Says he "You'd look fine in khaki, oh!(1)
For the King he is in need of men,
Come read this proclamation oh!
A life in Flanders for you then,
Would be a fine vacation now."
As I was going down the road, feeling fine and larky O,
A recruiting sergeant says to me, “Now you'd look fine in khaki O.
The King he is in need of men, come read his proclamation O.
A life in Flanders for you then would be a fine vacation O.”
"That maybe so," says I to him,
"But tell me sergent Dearie-oh!
If I had a pack stuck upon me back,
Would I look fine and cheerie oh!
For they'd have you train and drill until
They had you one of Frenchies oh!
It maybe warm in Flanders,
But it's draughty in the trenches oh!"
“That may be so,” says I to him, “but tell me sergeant dearie O,
If I had a pack stuck upon me back, do you think I'd look fine and cheery O?
You'd make me train and drill until they had me one of French's O.
It may be warm in Flanders but it's draughty in the trenches O.”
The Sergeant smiled and winked his eye,
His smile was most provoking oh!
He twiddled and twirled his wee moustache,
Says he, "I know your only joking oh!
For the sandbags are so warm and high,
The wind you won't feel blowing oh!"
Well I winked at a colleen passing by,
Says I, "What if it's snowing oh!"
The sergeant smiled and winked his eye, his smile was most provoking O.
He twiddled and twirled his wee moustache, says he, “You're only joking O!
For the sandbags are so warm and high, the wind you won't feel blowing O.”
Well I winked at a cailin passing by, says I, “What if it's snowing O?
"Come rain or hail or wind or snow,
I'm not going out to Flanders oh!
There's fighting in Dublin to be done.(2)
Let your Sergeants and Commanders go.
Let Englishmen fight English wars,
It's nearly time they started oh!
I salute the Sergeant a very good night!"
And there and then we parted oh!
Come rain or hail or wind or snow, we're not going out to Flanders O.
There's fighting in Dublin to be done, let your Sergeants and your Commanders go.
Let Englishmen for England fight, 'tis just about time they started O.”
I wished the Sergeant a very good night and there and then departed O.
(1) "Khaki" refers to the British army uniform (they had by this point abandoned the "Redcoat" look)

(2) The "fighting in Dublin" refers to the Easter Rising of 1916.



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