Lyrics

I’m concerned that all four verses are about to disappear from the internetweb. So here they are again. Sing along please, drink in hand. Double points to anyone who knows the verses in Irish.

Why spend your leisure bereft of pleasure,
Amassing treasure, why scrape and save?
Why look so canny at every penny?
You’ll take no money within the grave.
Landlords and gentry with all their plenty
Must still go empty where’er they’re bound.
So to my thinking, we’d best be drinking,
Our glasses clinking in round on round.

King Solomon’s glory, so famed in story,
Was far outshone by the lily’s guise.
But hard winds harden both field and garden;
Pleading for pardon, the lily dies.
Life’s but a bauble of toil and trouble,
The feathered arrow, once shot ne’er found.
So lads and lasses, because time passes,
Come fill your glasses for another round.

The huxter greedy he blinds the needy
Their straits unheeding, shouts, “money down!”
His special vice is his fancy prices,
For a florin’s value he’ll charge a crown.
With hump for trammel, the Scripture’s camel
Missed the needle’s eye and so came to ground.
Why pine for riches while still you’ve stitches
To hold your britches up — another round!

The schooner trading ‘tween Spain and Aden
Returns well laden with oil and corn.
And from Gibraltar her course she’ll alter
And steer for Malta and the Golden Horn.
With easy motion they sail life’s ocean
With ne’er a notion they’ll run aground.
It’s nought but miming, so ends my rhyming
And still we’ve time in for another round!

0 thoughts on “Lyrics”

  1. Verse 1 and verse 4, see:
    http://www.geocities.com/Athens/Parthenon/8998/preab_san_ol
    viz:
    Verse 1
    Is iomaí slí sin do bhíos ag daoine
    Ag cruinniú píosaí is ag déanamh stóir,
    ‘S a laghad a smaoiníos ar ghiorra a’ tsaoil seo,
    Go mbeidh siad sínte faoi leac go fóill.
    Más tiarna tíre, diúc no rí thú,
    Ní cuirfear pingin leat ‘s tú ‘dul faoin bhfód,
    Mar sin is dá bhrí sin, níl beart níos críonna
    Ná bheith go síoraí ag cur preab san ól.

    Verse 4
    An long ar sáile níl cuan ná cearda
    Nach gcaithfeadh cairde ar fud an domhain mhóir,
    Ó ríocht na Spáinne ‘gus suas Gibraltar,
    ‘Gus ins an áit a mbíonn an Grand Signiór,
    Le gach cargo ag líonadh málaí
    Ní choinneodh an bás uaidh uair nó dhó,
    Mar sin, a chairde, níl beart níos fearr dúinn
    Ná bheith mar táimid, ag cur preab san ól.

    From the Irish Socialist Issue 95, April 1970,
    Verse 3
    An ceannaí craosach nil meon ná slí ar bith
    Le ór a dhéanamh nach bhfeictear dhó,
    An ráta is daoire ar anearra is saoire,
    Is ar luach sé phinge de cuirfeadh c’Soróin;
    ‘S do réir chaint Chriosta is ni do-dhéanta
    An camall cíocrach ‘thabhairt tríd an geró;
    Mar sin ‘s dá bhrí sin, nil beart níos críonna
    Ná bheith go síoraí ag cur preab san ól.

    Verse 2
    Is gearr an saol tá ag an lílí sciamhach
    Cé gur buí agus gur geal a ghabháil,
    Is Solamh críonna ina chulaith riúil
    Nach bhfuil baol air in áille dhó.
    Nil satsaol seo ach mar soinneán gaoithe,
    Ga a scaoiltear nó slám de cheo:
    Mar sin ‘s dá bhrí sin, nil beart níos críonna
    Ná bheith go síoraí ag cur preab san ól.

    The English is of course a very loose translation of the Irish, or so I’m told, but a literal translation neither rhymes, nor fits the metre.
    Your English is as good as I’ve found.
    I have an extra couple of Irish verses, but no translation.
    Viz:
    Tá dream de dhaoine le ba is le caoirigh,
    Ag dul chun aonaigh is ‘fáil sochar mór,
    Á gcur chun cíbe is as sin chun mínligh,
    Sin pointí críonna feictear dhóibh.
    Tógaim fianaise ar an mbuíon seo,
    Go mbeidh siad sínte faoi leac go fóill.
    Mar sin is dá bhrí sin, níl beart níos críonna,
    Ná bheith go síoraí ag cur preab san ól.

    Is olc an tslí bheith ag ardú cíosa,
    Ag déanamh daoirse agus tribute mór,
    Ag cur na ndaoine ó theach ‘s ó dhídean,
    Ní faraoir atá cinnte dóibh,
    An té a níos sin, is dó is baolaí,
    A bheith in íochtar á bhruith is á dhó.
    Mar sin is dá bhrí sin, níl beart níos críonna,
    Ná bheith go síoraí ag cur preab san ól.

    These are verses 2 and 3 of Richard Barret’s original version, of which I have already given you 1 and 4

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