Loreena McKennitt - Bonny Portmore

O Bonny Portmore I am sorry to see
Such a woeful destruction of your ornament tree
For it stood on your shore for many's the long day
Till the long boats from Antrim came to float it away.

O Bonny Portmore you shine where you stand
And the more I think on you the more I think long
If I had you now as I had once before
All the Lords in Old England would not purchase Portmore.

All the Birds in the forest they bitterly weep
Saying "where shall we shelter or where shall we sleep?"
For the Oak and the Ash they all cutten down
And the walls of Bonny Portmore are all down to the ground.

O Bonny Portmore you shine where you stand
And the more I think on you the more I think long
If I had you now as I had once before
All the Lords in Old England would not purchase Portmore.


The destruction of old growth forests has become an important conservation issue in recent years, but it is not a new phenomenon. Over the centuries many of Ireland's old oak forests were leveled for military and shipbuilding purposes. Only recently has there been an effort to reestablish these great hardwoods. The Great Oak of Portmore stood on the property of Portmore Castle on the shore of Lough Beg. - L.M.

Music and lyrics traditional
From: The visit (1991).

A live version appears on Live in Paris and Toronto (1999). As Matthias Lagraf pointed out to me, the order of the stanzas is somewhat different: 2, 1, 2, 3, 2 (note that the original stanzas 2 and 4 are identical).

Another live version appears on Troubadours on the Rhine (2012).

The song can also be found on The journey so far - The Best of Loreena McKennitt (2014).

 
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last modified: 25 January 2014