'Twas pretty to be in Ballinderry, 'Twas pretty to be in Aghalee, 'Twas prettier to be in little Ram's Island, Trysting under the ivy tree! Ochone, ochone! Ochone, ochone! For often I roved in little Ram's Island, Side by side with Phelimy Hyland, And still he'd court me and I'd be coy, Though at heart I loved him, my handsome boy! "I'm going," he sighed, "from Ballinderry Out and across the stormy sea; Then if in your heart you love me, Mary, Open your arms at last to me." Ochone, ochone! Ochone, ochone! I opened my arms; how well he knew me! I opened my arms and took him to me; And there, in the gloom of the groaning mast, We kissed our first and we kissed our last! 'Twas happy to be in little Ram's Island, But now 'tis sad as sad can be; For the ship that sailed with Phelimy Hyland, It sunk for ever beneath the sea. Ochone, ochone! Ochone, ochone! And 'tis oh ! but I wear the weeping willow, And wander alone by the lonesome billow, And cry to him over the cruel sea, "Phelimy Hyland, come back to me!"
- by Alfred Perceval Graves (1846 - 1931), "'Twas pretty to be in Ballinderry", appears in Father O'Flynn and other Irish Lyrics, first published 1880 [author's text checked 1 time against a primary source]
Musical settings (art songs, Lieder, mélodies, (etc.), choral pieces, and other vocal works set to this text), listed by composer (not necessarily exhaustive)
- by Charles Villiers Stanford, Sir (1852 - 1924), "'Twas pretty to be in Ballinderry", published [1882?] [voice and piano], from the collection Songs of Old Ireland. A Collection of Fifty Irish Melodies Unknown in England, no. 17, arrangement ; London, Boosey & Co. ; dedicated to Johannes Brahms, August 1882 [text verified 1 time]
Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]
This text was added to the website: 2011-05-16
Line count: 30
Word count: 195