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James Bird

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James Bird

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James Bird

Where is Bird? The battle rages,
Is he in the strife or no?
Now the cannons roar tremendous:
Dare be meet his hostile foe?

Ay, behold! see him and Perry!
In the selfsame ship they fight;
Though his messmates fall around him,
Nothing can his soul affright.

Ay, behold! a ball has struck him,
See the crimson current flow:
"Leave the deck," exclaimed brave Perry;
"No," cries Bird, "I will not go".

"Here on board I tuck my station,
Ne 'er will Bird his colors fly;
I'll stand by you, gallant captain,
Til we conquer, lest we die.

Still he fought, though faint and bleeding,
Till our Stars and Stripes arose,
Victory having gained our efforts,
All triumphant o'er our foes.

[Bird deserts; he is court-martialed and shot]

See him kneel upon his coffin;
Sure his death can do no good:
Spare him! Hark! 0 God, they've shot him!
See, his bosom streams with blood.

Farewell Bird; farewell forever
Friends and home you'll see no more
Now his mangled corpse lies buried
On Lake Erie's distant shore

DT #361
Laws A5
Printed in Folk-Songs of the South
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E-Book - An Annotated Compendium of Old Time American Songs by James Alverson III