locke hospitalLOCKE HOSPITAL
As I was a-walking down by the Locke Hospital
Cold was the morning and dark was the day
I spied a young squaddie wrapped up in old linen
Wrapped up in old linen as cold as the day
Ch.: So play the drums slowly and play the fifes lowly
Sound a dead march as you carry him along
And over his coffin throw a bunch of white laurels
For he's a young soldier cut down in his prime.
Oh mother, dear mother, come sit ya down by me
Sit ya down by me and pity my sad plight
For my body is injured and sadly disordered
All by a young girl my own heart's delight
Get six of me comrades to carry my coffin
Get six of me comrades to carry me on high
And let every one hold a bunch of white roses
So no-one will notice as we pass them by
And over his headstone these words they were written
"All ye young fellows take warning from me.
Beware of the flash girls that roam through the city
For the girls of the city were the ruin of me."
recorded by Christy Moore on "Prosperous" (1972)
Christy writes: "There have been many British garrisons around the world
through the years and each one has had its own Locke Hospital for soldiers
who caught the dreaded disease. I believe this is a Dublin song, but if
not its musical origins are certainly Irish."
One of countless songs of the Unfortunate Rake family. While each telling
a completely different story, they all share the description of the funeral
(here chorus and verse 3). This version is probably very close to the
original version. American versions include "The Streets Of
Laredo" and "St. James Infirmary", British versions are "The Unfortunate
Rake" and "When I Was On Horseback" and many more. There is a Folkways record
("The Unfortunate Rake", FS 3805) dedicated exclusively to this family.