Come Back Paddy Reilly


The Garden of Eden has vanished, they say 
But I know the lie of it still; 
Just turn to the left at the bridge of Finea 
And stop when halfway to Cootehill. 
'Tis there I will find it, 
I know sure enough 
When fortune has come to me call, 
Oh the grass it is green around Ballyjamesduff 
And the blue sky is over it all. 
And tones that are tender and tones that are gruff 
Are whispering over the sea, 
"Come back, Paddy Reilly to Ballyjamesduff 
Come home, Paddy Reilly, to me". 

My mother once told me that when I was born 
The day that I first saw the light, 
I looked down the street on that very first morn 
And gave a great crow of delight. 
Now most newborn babies appear in a huff, 
And start with a sorrowful squall, 
But I knew I was born in Ballyjamesduff 
And that's why I smiled on them all. 
The baby's a man, now he's toil-worn and tough 
Still, whispers come over the sea, 
"Come back, Paddy Reilly to Ballyjamesduff 
Come home, Paddy Reilly, to me". 

The night that we danced by the light of the moon, 
Wid Phil to the fore wid his flute, 
When Phil threw his lip over "Come Again Soon", 
He's dance the foot out o' yer boot! 
The day that I took long Magee by the scruff 
For slanderin' Rosie Kilrain, 
Then, marchin' him straight out of Ballyjamesduff, 
Assisted him into a drain. 
Oh, sweet are the dreams, as the dudeen I puff, 
Of whisperings over the sea, 
"Come back, Paddy Reilly to Ballyjamesduff 
Come home, Paddy Reilly, to me". 

I've loved the young women of every land, 
That always came easy to me; 
Just barrin' the belles of the Black-a-moor brand 
And the chocolate shapes of Feegee. 
But that sort of love is a moonshiny stuff, 
And never will addle me brain, 
For the bells will be ringin' in Ballyjamesduff 
For me and me Rosie Kilrain! 
And through all their glamour, their gas and their guff 
A whisper comes over the sea, 
"Come back, Paddy Reilly to Ballyjamesduff 
Come home, Paddy Reilly, to me". 

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