Melody -

Oh father dear, I oft-times hear
You speak of Erin's isle
Her lofty hills, her valleys green,
Her mountains rude and wild
They say she is a lovely land
Wherein a saint might dwell
So why did you abandon her,
The reason to me tell.

Oh son, I loved my native land
With energy and pride
Till a blight came o'er the praties;
My sheep, my cattle died
My rent and taxes went unpaid,
I could not them redeem
And that's the cruel reason
Why I left old Skibereen.

Oh well do I remember
That bleak December day
The landlord and the sheriff came
To take us all away
They set my roof on fire
With their cursed English spleen
I heaved a sigh and bade goodbye
To dear old Skibereen.

Your mother too, God rest her soul,
Fell on the stony ground
She fainted in her anguish
Seeing desolation 'round
She never rose but passed away
From life to immortal dream
She found a quiet grave, me boy,
In dear old Skibereen.

And you were only two years old
And feeble was your frame
I could not leave you with my friends
For you bore your father's name
I wrapped you in my cóta mór
In the dead of night unseen
I heaved a sigh and bade goodbye
To dear old Skibereen.

Oh father dear, the day will come
When in answer to the call
All Irish men of freedom stern
Will rally one and all
I'll be the man to lead the band
Beneath the flag of green
And loud and clear we'll raise the cheer,
Revenge for Skibereen!

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