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a traditional Irish cottage

My cousin Bobby reminded me today of a song that our grandmother/Lulu/Nanny used to sing, and I grabbed onto the memory. It was Too-Ra-Loo-Ra-Loo-Ral  (That’s an Irish Lullaby).

Image result for 19th century farmer singing to baby

Lulu lived in a two-story house on Mirror Lake Farm.  When we were growing up, there were few houses on Shelbyville Road, and most were on farm land. My grandmother would walk around the house with her arms swaying and sing her favorite song of the moment. There never seemed to be a reason for her sudden vocalizing, except she wanted to. Often we would follow in her wake, trying to mimic her steps, as well as the lyrics, in a new game of Follow the Leader.

Over in Killarney, many years ago
My Mother sang a song to me in tones so sweet and low,
Just a simple little ditty, in her good ould Irish way,
And I’d give the world if she could sing That song to me this day.

Hush now don’t you cry!
That’s an Irish lullaby.

[Verse 2]
Oft, in dreams I wander To that cot again,
I feel her arms a huggin’ me As when she held me then.
And I hear her voice a hummin’ To me as in days of yore,
When she used to rock me fast asleep Outside the cabin door.

[Repeat refrain]

Written in 1913 for a play, it became popular in 1944 when Bing Crosby released it as a single. Listen to him sing this Irish lullaby.

And here are the Irish Tenors singing it.

Believe it might be time for a nap now!

As Barbara Jordan said, “Think what a better world it would be if we all, the whole world, had cookies and milk about three o’clock every afternoon and then lay down on our blankets for a nap.”

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