Soldiering On

Jez Colborne’s song explores his fascination with the pomp and ceremony of war, an experience he’s locked out of because “learning-disabled people don’t go to war”. A collaboration with Mind The Gap.




What an adventure, it's gonna be great

To fight for your country with your mates

We'll have hardships now and then

Come on boys, we're gonna be men.

Goodbye dad and goodbye mum

We'll leave our homes and follow the drum

By Christmas this war will be won.

And we'll be soldiering on.


I’d like the camaraderie

That uniform would look good on me

Sergeant would say "you're looking smart"

I just want to play my part

I’d follow orders to the end

And probably drive him round the bend

As long as he makes me big and strong

I’ll be soldiering on

By the left! Quick march!


Sergeant Major looked at me

He was mean as he could be

Then he whispered in my ear.

“Hop it boy, get out of here.”

Said, “You're not the fighting kind.

We are leaving you behind.

I'm afraid you don't belong.

You won't be soldiering on.”


[piano discordant]


I've been left without the boys.

They've gone to play with bigger toys.

What I'd give to be with them.

They never will return again.

They marched off into the grave

While I stood by the side to wave

And now that all my friends have gone

I've been left to soldier on.