Stars of Mexico

THE  STARS  OF MEXICO

by Harri Webb

They call me Jack the Fifer

and I come  from Nantyglo,

And I played my fife for freedom  

not so many years ago,

When we took the People’s Charter

to the gates of Newport  town,

When we marched to win  a Kingdom,  

and the soldiers shot us down.

And sometimes  I  remember  

the grey skies of Nantyglo

As I spread my trooper’s blanket  

‘neath the stars of Mexico.

In green and gracious valleys among the hills of Gwent

We never saw the sunshine,  

to earth  our backs were bent,

Like a toiling slave an early grave

was all we had to gain,

So we struck like men and struck again, but our struggle was in vain.

And sometimes I remember  

how we dealt that final blow

As I march to other battles

‘neath the stars of Mexico.

The month it was November  

and all the storm  winds blew,

And as we marched  to Newport,  full many of us knew

That our comrades would  be lying at the rising of the sun

Who’d never feel its warmth again,

nor hear our rivers run.

But we shouldered pike and musket

as onward  we did go

And we marched as bold  as any

in the wars of Mexico.

They’d have hanged me as a traitor,

so I  crossed the stormy  sea

And I play my fife in a better life

in the Land of Liberty.

For the cruel laws of England  

I  do not  give a damn

And I’m shouldering  my rifle

‘neath the flag of Uncle Sam,

And I’m marching as a soldier

in the War of Mexico

To a place I’ve never heard of,

and it’s called the Alamo.

They  call me Jack the Fifer

and I  come from  Nantyglo.

I always was a fighter

and I’ll always strike a· blow.

With  the Stars and Stripes above me, I’ll make a soldier’s stand

And not disgrace my ancient race,

nor dear Wales, my native land,

And  I’ll  take her honour with  me,  though  fate may lay me low

Far distant from my homeland,  

‘neath the stars of Mexico.

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