A recruiting sergeant came our way
From an Inn near town at the close of day
He said young Johnny you're a fine young man
Would you like to march along behind a military band,
With a scarlet coat and a fine cocked hat,
And a musket at your shoulder,
The shilling he took and he kissed the book,
Oh poor Johnny what will happen to ya?
The recruiting sergeant marched away
From the Inn near town at the break of day,
Johnny went too with half a ring
He was off to be a soldier he'd be fighting for the King
In a far off war in a far off land
To face a foreign soldier,
But how will you fare when there's lead in the air,
Oh poor Johnny what'll happen to ya?
When The sun rose hot on a barren land
Where a thin red line took a military stand,
There was sling shot, chain shot, grape shot too,
Swords and bayonets thrusting through,
Poor Johnny fell but the day was won
And the King is grateful to you
But your soldiering's done and they're sending you home,
Oh poor Johnny what have they done to ya?
They said he was a hero and not to grieve
Over two wooden pegs and empty sleeves,
They carried him home and set him down
With a military pension and a medal from the crown.
But You haven't an arm, you haven't a leg,
The enemy nearly slew you,
You'll have to go out on the streets to beg,
He said my Johnny you're a fine young man
C Eb C
O Polly love, O Polly love, the route it is begun,
Eb Ab Eb
And we must go on marchin' to the beating of a drum,
Come dress yourself in all your best and come along with me,
C Eb C Bm
I'll take you to the cruel war, in High Germany.
O Harry, dearest Harry, now mind what you do say,
My feet they are so tender I cannot march away,
Besides, my dearest Harry, I am with child by thee,
Not fitting for the cruel war, in High Germany.
I'll buy you horse my love, and you ride
And all my delights shall walking at your's side
Will stop at every littel house, and drink when where are dry
Be truth to one another, get nuried by and by.
Offcourse will be the cruel war, that ever they should you rise
Ab F G
And note of mary England, pres many a man likewise
They took her Harry from her, like wise a brothers three
Eb Bb Eb Bb C
And sent them to the cruel wars in High Germany
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