The Green Fields of France Lyrics – Free PDF for Printouts

If you’ve been looking for The Green Fields of France lyrics, especially if you’d like to print them out, then you’re on the right page!

“The Green Fields of France” is a song written in 1976 by Scottish-born Australian folk singer-songwriter Eric Bogle. The song is also known as “No Man’s Land” or “Willie McBride”. Bogle drew inspiration to write it after visiting the military cemeteries from WWI in Flanders and Northern France.

In the song, Willie McBride is an Irish soldier killed in 1916, just at the age of 19. Bogle chose an Irish name for his hero as a counter to the anti-Irish sentiment prevalent in Britain at the time. Regardless of whether Willie McBride had actually been a real person or a fictional character, he stands for very young man who lost his life in any war and any battle. These few words from the third verse strike our hearts with all the horror, the misery and the cruelty of war:

To man’s blind indifference to his fellow man
To a whole generation that were butchered and damned

Being one of the most powerful anti-war songs ever written, “The Green Fields of France” has been covered by numerous Irish artists, like The Furey Brothers and Davey Arthur, John McDermott, The High Kings – just to name a few.

On this page you’ll find the lyrics of the song and a printable PDF file with lyrics for free download. You can also watch a sing-along video.

Table of Contents

Printable The Green Fields of France Lyrics PDF

Click on the button to download a PDF file with lyrics to this song for free.

The Green Fields of France lyrics printable PDF

The Green Fields of France Lyrics

Well, how do you do, young Willie McBride?
Do you mind if I sit here down by your graveside?
And rest for a while in the warm summer sun
I’ve been walking all day, and I’m nearly done
I see by your gravestone you were only nineteen
When you joined the great fallen in 1916
I hope you died well and I hope you died clean
Or young Willie McBride, was it slow and obscene?

Did they beat the drum slowly, did they play the fife lowly?
Did they sound the death march as they lowered you down?
Did the band play The Last Post in chorus?
Did the pipes play the Flowers of the Forest?

Did you leave a wife or a sweetheart behind?
In some faithful heart is your memory enshrined?
Although, you died back in 1916
In that faithful heart are you forever nineteen?
Or are you a stranger without even a name
Enclosed in forever behind the glass frame
In an old photograph, torn, battered and stained
And faded to yellow in a brown leather frame?

Did they beat the drum slowly, did they play the fife lowly?
Did they sound the death march as they lowered you down?
Did the band play The Last Post in chorus?
And did the pipes play the Flowers of the Forest?

The sun now it shines on the green fields of France
There’s a warm summer breeze that makes the red poppies dance
And look how the sun shines from under the clouds
There’s no gas, no barbed wire, there’s no guns firing now
But here in this graveyard it’s still No Man’s Land
The countless white crosses stand mute in the sand
To man’s blind indifference to his fellow man
To a whole generation that were butchered and damned

Did they beat the drum slowly, did they play the fife lowly?
Did they sound the death march as they lowered you down?
Did the band play The Last Post in chorus?
Did the pipes play the Flowers of the Forest?

Ah young Willie McBride, I can’t help wonder, why?
Do those that lie here know why did they die?
And did they believe when they answered the call?
Did they really believe that this war would end wars?
Well the sorrow, the suffering, the glory, the pain
The killing and dying, were all done in vain
For young Willie McBride, it all happened again
And again, and again, and again, and again

Did they beat the drum slowly, did they play the fife lowly?
Did they sound the death march as they lowered you down?
Did the band play The Last Post in chorus?
Did the pipes play the Flowers of the Forest?

Did they beat the drum slowly, did they play the fife lowly?
Did they sound the death march as they lowered you down?
Did the band play The Last Post in chorus?
And did the pipes play the Flowers of the Forest?

Sing-along Video

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