(This score available as
a MIDI file)
Pennywhistle notation and Dulcimer tab for this song is also available
Green Grow the Lilacs cho: Green grow the lilacs, all sparkling with dew I'm lonely, my darling, since parting with you; But by our next meeting IU'll hope to prove true And change the green lilacs to the Red, White and Blue. I once had a sweetheart, but now I have none She's gone and she's left me, I care not for one Since she's gone and left me, contented I'll be, For she loves another one better than me. cho: I passed my love's window, both early and late The look that she gave me, it makes my heart ache; Oh, the look that she gave me was painful to see, For she loves another one better than me. cho: I wrote my love letters in rosy red lines, She sent me an answer all twisted and twined; Saying,"Keep your love letters and I will keep mine Just you write to your love and I'll write to mine." Note: After Wildwood Flower, this may be the most universally folk-processed song ever. Every version I've seen has at least one alternate locution; I decided that it wasn't worth listing all the variants I've encountered. Lilacs, or Laurels; Red White and Blue or Orange and Blue; "sparkling with dew" or "all wet with the dew" or "and so does the rue" ;"twisted and twined" or "twisted with twine" --- etcetera, etcetera, etcetera. Nobody's quite sure what the words mean (in detail, that is), and probably a lot of the singers mumbled a good deal; in any case, don't worry too much and enjoy. It's a great tune. Oh yes, the story about this being the basis for the Mexican epithet of "gringo" is most likely pure fakelore. RG Recorded by the Mitchell Trio, Tony Kraber RG
Thanks to Mudcat for the Digital Tradition!