GREEN GROW THE LILACS

Posted on Posted in Breedloves's Folk Songs
GREEN GROW THE LILACS
This ballad is based on a similar song, “Green Grows the Laurel’, that was popular in
17th century Scotland. The American ballad tells the story of an American soldier’s love
for a Mexican lass. One story of the songs origin speculates that Cowboys in South Texas
loved to sing the song. Across the way, Mexicans, who could not understand the words,
could only hear “Green Grow”. So White Americans became known as “Gringo” by the
Mexicans. However, other scholars date the term to the incursion of American troops in
Mexico to search for Pancho Villa.
Green grow the lilacs, all sparkling with dew
I’m lonely, my darling, since parting with you;
But by our next meeting I’ll hope to prove true
And change the green lilacs to the Red, White and Blue.
Green grow the lilacs reminding me of
The ones that I brought you with all of my love,
The gates of my country will open for you
And change the green lilacs to the Red, White and Blue.
Green grow the lilacs, Your favorite flow’r,
So sweetly perfuming – a sad parting hour.
Oh send me a message – That you love me too,
Let’s change the green lilacs to the Red, White and Blue.