James I Understand

Mary McEvoy, 1982

Audio

This example of "James I Understand" is performed by Mary McEvoy, recorded live at the Tommy Makem International Festival of Song, June 6, 2000. Used with permission.
Please refer to Cantaria's Copyright information

Notes: Mary wrote this song for the 100th anniversary of James Joyce. She has sung this at the Joyce Tower in Sandycove, Dublin, on a few Blooms Days.

Recording and performance permission for this song can be obtained by writing to:
Mary McEvoy, 11 Gordon Street,  Ringsend, Dublin 4 Ireland

James I understand, when all is said and done
Though you left Dublin town, you never let her down
You played while Giorgio sang, Lucia broke your heart
With Nora by your side, from you she'd never part

On a golden day in June
You met your Molly Bloom
A Galway girl remarkable, 
The handsome Nora Barnacle
And in your clever way you stole her heart that day
With you she went to Rome, far from her Galway home

James I understand
When all is read and done
Though you left Dublin town, you never let her down
You played while Giorgio sang, Lucia broke your heart
With Nora by your side, from you she'd never part

Of you I have a dream
Of how things might have been
In Paris at your best in Zurich or Treasc
With friends all gathered round, some happiness you found
In songs of long ago, while you played piano

Oh James I understand
When all is read and done
Though you left Dublin town, you never let her down
You played while Giorgio sang, Lucia broke your heart
With Nora by your side, from you she'd never part

It seems to me a shame
You suffered in your pain
Your scholar's mark immortalized, the city under Irish skies
I'm sure the day you died, the Anna Livia cried
Amd trees in Stephen's Green bowed down their heads in grief.