An Eala Bhàn (The White Swan)

This song was composed by Dòmhnall Ruadh Chorùna during the Battle of the Somme (July 1-November 18, 1916) – a battle in which over one million were wounded or killed. It is addressed to Magaidh NicLeòid (Maggie MacLeod), his sweetheart during the time of the war.

Here it’s sung by Karen Matheson.

An Eala Bhàn

Gur duilich leam mar tha mi
‘S mo chridhe ‘n sas aig bron
Bhon an uair a dh’fhag mi
Beanntan ard a’ cheo
Gleanntannan a’mhanrain
Nan loch, nam bagh ‘s nan srom
‘S an eala bhan tha tamh ann
Gach la air ‘m bheil mi ‘n toir.

A Mhagaidh na bi tursach
A ruin, ged gheibhinn bas-
Co am fear am measg an t-sluaigh
A mhaireas buan gu brath?
Chan eil sinn uile ach air chuairt
Mar dhithein buaile fas
Bheir siantannan na blianna sios
‘S nach tog a’ ghrian an aird.

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The Green Fields of France

As sung by the Clancy Brothers,  a song by the Scottish-Austrailian songwriter by Eric Bogle which laments the terrible losses of World War I.

Green Fields of France

How do you do, young Willie McBride,
Do you mind if I sit here, by your grave side
And rest for a while in the warm summer sun,
I’ve been walking all day and I’m nearly done
I see by your grave stone your were only nineteen,
When joined the great fallen in 1915
I hope you died well and I hope you died clean,
Or Willie McBride was it slow and obscene

Did they beat the drum slowly, did they play the fife lowly
Did they sound the dead march as they lowered you down
Did the band play the last post and Chorus
Did the pipes play “The Flowers of the Forest”

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