Home 9 Composers 9 Mark Sirett 9 THE CLIFFS OF DOONEEN

The Cliffs of Dooneen is a popular and haunting Irish folk song that extols the rugged beauty of the Atlantic coast. The final verse expresses longing for the homeland–a sentiment shared by many Irish immigrants during the nineteenth century when they were forced to leave for North America because of the Great Famine. This arrangement was written for Sister Rita Clare and the Cape Breton Chorale for the Celtic Colours Festival in 2008. The SSA version is dedicated to Ann McIntyre, Conductor of the Edmonton Children’s Choir.


You may travel afar from your own native home
Faraway o’er the mountain, faraway o’er the foam
But of all the fine places that I’ve ever seen
Sure there’s none can compare
With the cliffs of Dooneen
Take a view o’er the mountains
Fine sights you’ll see there
You’ll see the high rocky mountains
On the west coast of Clare
Oh the town of Kilkeen and Kilrush can be seen
From the high rocky slopes
Of the cliffs of Dooneen

It’s a nice place to be on a fine summer’s day
Watching all the wild flowers that ne’er do decay
The hare and lofty pheasant are quite plain to be seen
Building homes for their young
Round the cliffs of Dooneen

Fare thee well to Dooneen
Fare thee well for a while
And to all the fine people I’m leaving behind
To the streams and the meadows
Where late I have been
And the high rocky slopes
Round the cliffs of Dooneen




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