My grandsire beat the drum complete
His name was Darby Kelly, O
No lad so true at rat-tat-too
At roll call or reveillez O
When Marlbro's name first rose to fame
So proud he rolled the Point of War
At Blenheim he and Ramillies
Fired all our champions to the core
And O, his wrist has such a twist
When home they marched with row-dow-dow
With one great shout the boys came out
The girls they gazed, you don't know how.
A son he had, who was my dad,
The second Darby Kelly, O.
As quick and true at rat-tat-too,
At roll-call or reveillez O,
When great Wolfe died, his country's pride,
To arms, to arms the father beat,
Each dale and hill remembers still
How loud and long, how clear and sweet!
And when from home from off the foam
He led the march with row-dow-dow
Och! what a shout the lads let out,
The lasses looked, you don't know how.
And now, small blame, I bear the name
And drum of Darby Kelly O.
Myself as true at rat-tat-too
At roll call or reveillez O.
With Wellington, old Ireland's sun,
I've beat the Mounseers out of Spain,
And now we march through laurel arch
And waving banners home again;
And as my sticks the same old tricks
They play with patt'ring row-dow-dow,
Man, woman, child, they've all gone wild,
The girls they gaze, you don't know how.
Singing Together, Summer 1968, BBC Publications
(Search Roud index at VWML) Take Six