It happened once upon a time
As sages tell in phrase sublime;
That Tom Gilheaney stout and straight
Prepared his pike in ninety-eight,
And from Drumkeeran did advance
To join the gallant sons of France.
Thus hastily equipped for war
He journeyed on to Castlebar,
Where there he showed good Irish play
Before the Saxons ran away.
It made him joyful to behold
The flutter of the green and gold
And oftentimes that day he said,
"Thank God the green waves o'er the red."
Next morning for Collooney then
He marched with the Killala men,
Where victory again did smile
Upon the banners of our Isle.
The rank and file, with lances long,
Unfailing nerves and sinews strong,
The vengeful mandate did obey,
Which made them victors of the day.
To see how foemen reeled and ran
Was balsam for an Irishman.
Besides the band conjointly played
In thundering strains, "The White Cockade",
And brilliant was Gilheaney's luck,
Til he arrived at Ballinamuck.
(There are 27 more stanzas to this song.)