The Star of the County Down

Near Banbridge town, in the County Down
One evening last July
Down a boreen green came a sweet colleen
And she smiled as she passed me by.
She looked so sweet from her two bare feet
To the sheen of her nut-brown hair
Such a coaxsome elf, I’d to shake myself
To make sure I was standing there.

From Bantry Bay up to Derry Quay
And from Galway to Dublin town
No maid I’ve seen like the sweet colleen
That I met in the County Down.

As she onward sped I shook my head
And I gazed with a feeling rare
And I said, says I, to a passerby
“Who’s the one with the nut-brown hair?”
He smiled at me, and with pride says he,
“She’s the gem of old Ireland’s crown.
Young Rosie McCann from the banks of the Bann
And the star of the County Down.”

She’d a soft brown eye and
a look so sly and a smile like a rose in June
And you held each note from her auburn throat,
as she lilted lamenting tunes
At the pattern dance you’d be in trance
as she skipped through a jig or reel
When her eyes she’d roll, as she’d lift your soul
And your heart she would likely steal

At the harvest fair she’ll be surely there
and I’ll dress my Sunday clothes
With my hat cocked right and my shoes shone bright
for a smile from the nut-brown Rose
No horse I’ll yoke, or pipe I smoke,
’til the rust in my plough turn brown
And a smiling bride by my own fireside
sits the star of the County Down

I’ve travelled a bit, but never was hit
Since my roving career began
But fair and square I surrendered there
To the charms of young Rose McCann.
I’d a heart to let and no tenant yet
Did I meet with in shawl or gown
But in she went and I asked no rent
From the star of the County Down.