The Old Oak Tree

He was loving me a little by the Old Oak Tree
on a day when May was full of spring
He was loving me a little by the Old Oak Tree
making promises of chapels and a ring
and we kissed and we cuddled till the dusk had painted brown
all the colours of the afternoon lay sleeping in the town
and I never knew how men can lie
to get a maid laid down
as we loved a little by the Old Oak Tree

I was dancing with my lover round the Old Oak Tree
With my heart full it gave me joy to sing
I was dancing with my lover round the Old Oak Tree
In a gown that sparkled as its folds did swing
And we skipped and we pranced ‘til the dancing wore us down
All the shimmer shining jewels falling neatly to the ground
The music was so very low and hardly made a sound
as we danced together round the Old Oak Tree

She was playing with her baby by the Old Oak Tree
as the summer sun beat down upon the path
she was playing with her baby by the Old Oak Tree
as the leaves above her danced their summer dance
and the tree watched the baby as turned into a child
and still it was watching as the young boys playing smiled
and only some years later as a young man was beguiled
there’s another baby by the Old Oak Tree

We were huddling together ‘neath the Old Oak Tree
Under skies that were threatening to rain
We were snuggling together Neath the Old Oak Tree
With our hands pressed soft against the patterned grain
And we moaned and we struggled as the winds began to blow
Cursing all the others round us who were somehow in the know
And we watched the birds fly gently by While sheltering from the snow
How we shivered by that creaky Old Oak Tree

Today I sit in sadness by the Old Oak Tree
for today my heart can’t bear to sing
Yes today I sit in sadness by the Old Oak Tree
For today the news is bad I have to bring
The postman brought a letter saying I must go to war
And the chances are I'll never sit beneath this tree some more
And I don't know if I will return for battle can be raw
So I sit in sadness by the Old Oak Tree

But now I sit in gladness by the Old Oak Tree
And my life will fade away with its sweet song
Yes and now I sit in gladness by the Old Oak Tree
For your wooden crutch is helping me along
For we both may be injured though our wounds I cannot see
The scars have helped to set our friends and countrymen all free
And it’s Here I've always rested and you always have healed me
So I sit in gladness by the Old Oak Tree

Found some ashes and some embers round the Old Oak Tree
Under cover where the reckless smoke did spark
Found a teapot and a lemon round the Old Oak Tree
And I wondered what was brewing for a lark
There were cans there were bottles there were needles in the grass
and I see so very clearly there's much straying from the path
With the young so quick to try these dancing dangers for a laugh
There’s no hiding from the knowing Old Oak Tree

Softly padding past the sapling of the young oak tree
cat and bear and wolf went by so very fast
Roe deer gallop there with horse and hounds in hot pursuit
With the hunting horn resounding from the past
Now the dog walkers stroll and chatter ‘neath my heavy boughs
by the gleaming eyes of weary dogs and lazy cat meows
And the dogs have gleaming in their eyes and hope for sheep and cows
as they wander past beneath the Old Oak Tree

We were gathering together by the Old Oak Tree
With our tales of woe and weeping and remorse
We were whispering together by the Old Oak Tree
Sharing gossip from a very shaky source
And we planned and we plotted till the sun was sinking down
Busy hatching all the havoc we’d unleash upon the town
Till the warden moved us all along impatient with a frown
No more mischief by the knowing Old Oak Tree

They were setting up the easels by the Old Oak Tree
board and brushes at the ready to begin
they were looking at the branches of the Old Oak Tree
hoping that some inspiration it would bring
then along came Maud not a stitch that she did wear
with upstairs a heavy trunk and some flowers in her hair
and I never understood quite why but paint flew everywhere
as we sketched a little by the Old Oak Tree

We were walking we were talking near the Old Oak Tree
While the children gathered acorns from the ground
We are singing we are dancing round the Old Oak Tree
Where the children planted acorns they have found
And the birds and the squirrels watching over us on high
When the sunlight started fading and the evening it was nigh
it was time to kiss each other thinking how the time does fly
And the growing carries on
and the lives are come and gone
rise and setting like the sun
this Old Oak Tree

 

Lyrics:
Barb Jungr, Ring of Fire (Gill Arthey, Bridget Gibbs, Ann Gray, Elsa Holmes, Sarah Mellor, Carole Miles, Shusha Walmsley)

Music written and arranged by:
Barb Jungr, Mark Brennan and George Reilly

All pre-recorded work produced by:
Mark Brennan

Vocal arrangements: 
Gareth Fuller

Registered Charity No. 1169357