Cork Songs

Johnny Jump Up

I'll tell you a story that happened to me
One day, as I went down to Cork by the Lee
The sun, it was bright, and the day, it was warm
Thinks I, "A cold pint wouldn't do me no harm"

I went to the barman; I says, "Give me a stout!"
Says the barman, "I'm sorry: the beer is sold out
Try whiskey or vodka ten years in the wood"
Says I, "I'll try cider - I hear that it's good"

O never! O never! O never again
If I live to a hundred or a hundred and ten
For I fell to the ground, and I couldn't get up
After drinking a pint of that Johnny Jump Up!

After lowering the third, I headed straight for the yard
Where I bumped into Brophy, the big civic guard
"Come here to me, boy - don't you know I'm the law?"
Well I up with my first, and I shattered his jaw

He fell to the ground with his knees doubled up
But it wasn't I hit him; 'twas the Johnny Jump up
The next thing I saw, down in Cork by the Lee
Was a cripple on crutches, and he beckoned to me

"I'm afraid for my life - I'll be hit by a car
Would you help me across to the Railwaymen's Bar?"
And, after three pints of that cider so sweet
He threw down his crutches, and he danced on his feet


I went down the Lee Road a friend for to see
They had him in a madhouse in Cork by the Lee
And, when I got there - the truth I do tell -
They had the poor bugger locked up in a cell

Says the doctor to him, "Say these words, if you can
'Round the ragged rocks the ragged rascal ran' "
"Tell them I'm not crazy! Tell them I'm not mad
'Twas only six pints of that cider I had!"


A man died in the Union by the name of McNabb
They washed him and laid him outside on a slab
And, after the coroner his measure did take
His wife brought him home to a bloody fine wake

'Twas about twelve o'clock, and the beer, it was high
When the corpse, he sat up, and he said, with a cry
I can't get to heaven, they won't let me up
'til I bring them a quart of the Johnny Jump up