Navy Boys, The (Paddy's Green Shamrock Shore)

An Irish Navvy describes his working and social life; and thinks nostalgically of Ireland.

Its first when I set out on tramp¹ I was but very young
My mind was bent on merriment, on joy, and on fun
My mind was bent on merriment and ne'er could give it o'er
For still my mind was quite content on Paddy's green shamrock shore
With my laddy fal de de with my lady fal de do
With my lady fal de de, we are navy boys you know

When I became a navy man I own I was dismayed [Note 306.1]
To see our noble backmen on them a while I gazed [Note 306.2]
Likewise our noble barrow men who ne'er could give it o'er [Note 306.4]
In hopes that they would meet again on Paddy's green shamrock shore

On Monday morning when we go out, our work to begin
The noise of our tools brave boys, does make the valleys ring
We will drive our piles and bore our holes, by one, by toe, by four [Note 306.3]
The best of our navigators come from Paddy's green shamrock shore

When the rain it does come on we are happy then as kings
We are off into the ale-house and the bell it loudly rings
We call for liquor of the best and our bumpers they run o'er
The very first toast that we drink is to Paddy's green shamrock shore

When we meet a bad landlady, the truth to you I tell
We do our whole endeavours it for to please her well
But at the pay we slope¹ her, as we've oft done before
And with her money drink a health to Paddy's green shamrock shore

When we meet a bonny lass we give to her a kiss
We take her in our arms be boys, I own it is no miss;
We take her in our arm and kiss her o'er and o'er
But still the one that we like best is on Paddy's green shamrock shore

Come all you roving navys that listen to my song
I hope you'll not be angry if I've said anything wrong;
I own I am a navy bold, the truth I will deplore
Many a happy day I spent on Paddy's green shamrock shore