I Shall Not Die

I shall not die because of you
Oh woman though you shame the swan
They were foolish men you killed
Do not think me a foolish man

Why should I leave the world behind
For the soft hand, the dreaming eye
The crimson lips, the breasts of snow
Is it for these you’d have me die

Why should I heed the fancy free
The joyous air, the eye of blue
The side like foam, the virgin neck
I shall not die because of you

The devil take the golden hair
That maiden look, that voice so gay
The delicate heel and pillared thigh
Only some foolish man would slay

Oh woman though you shame the swan
A wise man taught me all he knew
I know the crooked ways of love
I shall not because of you
I shall not because of you

I shall not because of you
Oh woman though you shame the swan
They were foolish men you killed
Do not think me a foolish man

Why should I leave the world behind
For the soft hand, the dreaming eye
The crimson lips, the breasts of snow
Is it for these you’d have me die

Oh woman though you shame the swan
A wise man taught me all he knew
I know the crooked ways of love
I shall not because of you
I shall not because of you
I shall not because of you

Song Notes

The lyrics to “I shall Not Die” were translated from Gaelic by Frank O’Connor.