Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Oh Danny Boy Third Verse

Oh Danny Boy has been a favorite song of mine ever since my first date with my wife (before we were married).  I heard it performed by world renowned tenor (famous for performances with the Metropolitan Opera), Stanford Olsen, at President of the LDS Church (at the time) Gordon B. Hinckley's 90th birthday celebration.


I remember listening to the beautiful music, reflecting on the lyrics of the song, and considering the emotions President Hinckley must have as he had not too long previously experienced the passing of his wife, Marjorie.  I was touched.  I have reflected on that moment and that date many times.

Just today, I opened a youtube video of a performance of the same song by BYU's Vocal Point.  It's an impressive a'cappella rendition of the song.  I was quite surprised to hear a THIRD verse to the song.  I have only ever heard TWO.

The third verse brought tears to my eyes--actually I wept--as I considered the loss my own parents have recently experienced at the passing of their son (my brother), Wade.  (Below is a link to his obituary)

http://www.legacy.com/obituaries/postregister/obituary.aspx?pid=167941274

Here is the third verse:


Oh danny boy the stream flows cool and slowly
And pipes still call and echo cross the glen
Your broken mother sighs and feels so lonely
For you have not returned to smile again

So if you’ve died and crossed the stream before us
We pray that angels met you on the shore
And you’ll look down and gently you’ll implore us
To live so we may see your smiling face once more.


I did a search, and didn't find this verse written anywhere, so I transcribed what I heard BYU's Vocal Point sing.  I believe this verse seems to contain 'the rest of the story' of that song.  And to my dear mother and father who I know still long for him to 'return and smile again' (as do we all, who knew him well), I hope you know you are still in my prayers daily--as I am sure you must be in Wade's as well, as he implores we live 'so we may see his smiling face once more'.

Here is the link to the BYU Vocal Point version:

http://youtu.be/YfRielL3Q94

Here are the complete lyrics to the song:


Oh Danny Boy

Oh, Danny boy, the pipes, the pipes are calling

From glen to glen, and down the mountain side

The summer's gone, and all the flow'rs are dying

'Tis you, 'tis you must go and I must bide.

But come ye back when summer's in the meadow

Or when the valley's hushed and white with snow

'Tis I'll be here in sunshine or in shadow

Oh, Danny boy, oh, Danny boy, I love you so.

 ===========

And if you come, and all the flowers are dying

If I am dead, as dead I well may be

I pray you'll find the place where I am lying

And kneel and say an "Ave" there for me.

And I shall hear, though soft you tread above me

And all my grave will warm and sweeter be

And then you'll kneel and whisper that you love me

And I shall sleep in peace until you come to me.

 ============

Oh danny boy the stream flows cool and slowly
And pipes still call and echo cross the glen
Your broken mother sighs and feels so lonely
For you have not returned to smile again

So if you’ve died and crossed the stream before us
We pray that angels met you on the shore
And you’ll look down and gently you’ll implore us
To live so we may see your smiling face once more.


3 comments:

Stacey B. said...

The 3rd verse was written by Keith Evans, a member of Vocalpoint. That's why you probably haven't heard or seen it before.

Lars Hanson said...

Here is yet another "third verse" which I frankly much prefer, meself...

Lars Hanson said...

This is MY favorite third verse. Don;t know if Sinead O'Connor actually wrote it, but safe bet millions of us unreformed Celts embrace it...

"But if I live,
and should you die for Ireland,
Let not your dying thoughts
be just of me.

But say a prayer to God
for our dearest Ireland.
I know she'll hear
and help to set her free.

And I will take your pike
and place my dearest,
And strike a blow,
though weak the blow may be.

T'will help the cause
to which your heart was nearest
Oh Danny Boy, Oh, Danny boy
I love you so.