Lyrics

While going the road to sweet Athy, aroo, haroo
While going the road to sweet Athy, aroo, haroo
While going the road to sweet Athy
A stick in my hand and a tear in my eye
A doleful damsel I heard cry
Johnny I hardly knew ye

With your drums and guns and guns and drums, aroo, haroo
With your drums and guns and guns and drums, aroo, haroo
With your drums and guns and guns and drums
The enemy nearly slew ye
My darling dear, you look so queer
Johnny I hardly knew ye

Where are the eyes that looked so mild, aroo, haroo
Where are the eyes that looked so mild, aroo, haroo
Where are the eyes that looked so mild
When my poor heart you first beguiled
Why did you run from me and the child
Johnny I hardly knew ye

With your drums and guns and guns and drums, aroo, haroo
With your drums and guns and guns and drums, aroo, haroo
With your drums and guns and guns and drums
The enemy nearly slew ye
My darling dear, you look so queer
Johnny I hardly knew ye

Where are the legs with which you run, aroo, haroo
Where are the legs with which you run, aroo, haroo
Where are the legs with which you run
When you went to carry a gun
Indeed your dancing days are done
Johnny I hardly knew ye

With your drums and guns and guns and drums, aroo, haroo
With your drums and guns and guns and drums, aroo, haroo
With your drums and guns and guns and drums
The enemy nearly slew ye
My darling dear, you look so queer
Johnny I hardly knew ye

It grieved my heart to see you sail, aroo, haroo
It grieved my heart to see you sail, aroo, haroo
It grieved my heart to see you sail
Though from my heart you took leg bail
Like a cod you're doubled up head and tail
Johnny I hardly knew ye

With your drums and guns and guns and drums, aroo, haroo
With your drums and guns and guns and drums, aroo, haroo
With your drums and guns and guns and drums
The enemy nearly slew ye
My darling dear, you look so queer
Johnny I hardly knew ye

You haven't an arm and you haven't a leg, aroo, haroo
You haven't an arm and you haven't a leg, aroo, haroo
You haven't an arm and you haven't a leg
You're an eyeless, noseless, chickenless egg
Why did you run from me and the child
Johnny I hardly knew ye

With your drums and guns and guns and drums, aroo, haroo
With your drums and guns and guns and drums, aroo, haroo
With your drums and guns and guns and drums
The enemy nearly slew ye
My darling dear, you look so queer
Johnny I hardly knew ye

I'm happy for to see you home, aroo, haroo
I'm happy for to see you home, aroo, haroo
I'm happy for to see you home
All from the island of Sulloon
So low in flesh, so high in bone
Johnny I hardly knew ye

With your drums and guns and guns and drums, aroo, haroo
With your drums and guns and guns and drums, aroo, haroo
With your drums and guns and guns and drums
The enemy nearly slew ye
My darling dear, you look so queer
Johnny I hardly knew ye

This song constitutes a strong comment on the woes of war. The lyrics are thought to date from the 19th century.

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