“There’ll Be Bluebirds Over the White Cliffs of Dover”

One of the first professional orchestra engagements that I ever had was to accompany Vera Lynn.

Vera Lynn (photo: uDiscover) 1917 – 2020

Dame Vera was Britain’s beloved “Forces Sweetheart” during WW2. Her most famous song was:

There’ll be bluebirds over
The white cliffs of Dover
Tomorrow, just you wait and see

The American lyricist, Nat Burton, wrote his lyric (perhaps unaware that the bluebird is not indigenous to Britain, though the migrant Swallow ‘Bluebird’ is a well known British harbinger of Spring and Summer).

When I was teaching elementary school, I always had the choir sing this song for Remembrance Day.

A good place to see Bluebirds is in Forks of the Credit Park near Caledon which I visited today.

Eastern Bluebird (male)
Eastern Bluebird (male)
Eastern Bluebird (male)
Eastern Bluebird (male)
Eastern Bluebird (male)
Eastern Bluebird (male)
Eastern Bluebird (male)

Other birds:

American Goldfinch (female)
Eastern Kingbird
Cedar Waxwing
Cedar Waxwing
Cedar Waxwing
Clay-coloured Sparrow
Field Sparrow
Hairy Woodpecker (male)
Eastern Towhee (male)
Field Sparrow

Park views:

kettle lake
Bluebird house
kettle lake
kettle lake

Some botany:

Wild Mint (Mentha canadensis)
Blue Vervain (Verbena hastata)
Spatterdock (Nuphar lutea)
Boneset (eupatorium perfoliatum)
Queen Anne’s-lace (Daucus carota)
St. John’s-wort (Hypericum perforatum)
Red Clover (Trifolium pratense)

SONG LYRICS

The shepherd will tend his sheep
The valley will bloom again
And Jimmy will go to sleep
In his own little room again

There’ll be bluebirds over
The white cliffs of Dover
Tomorrow, just you wait and see – Nat Burton

Miles Hearn

3 thoughts on ““There’ll Be Bluebirds Over the White Cliffs of Dover”

  1. Mary Auers

    Hello Miles
    Great photos of the Bluebirds
    What trail(s) should I walk in Forks of the Credit Park to see the Bluebirds.

    Reply
    1. Leah

      Thanks for posting your question, I would love to know as well. 😊

      The Bluebirds gave you some nice poses Miles. I wonder if the Bobolink is there too.

      Reply
  2. Susan R.

    Agree – great photos f the bluebird. A wonderul picture of Vera Lynn too and a great memory of that song. I saw and heard her sing at the CNE bandshell in either 1969 or 1974 when I was home in Hamilton from Ireland. Were you playing then? She was getting on then but still so thrilling to see and hear her sing that song and many others. I’m so glad you taught it to your school kids – I learned it from my Dad’s secretary when I was quite young – she was a young English woman who lived in London during the blitz and emigrated to HAmilton. The last bluebird I saw was in Portugal on the CAmino in 2018 – very tame and we were able to watch it hopping on the path for quite some time – perhaps used to being fed by pilgrims? Such a charming little bird so I hope I see one closer to home. Thanks for a lovely selection this time as always.

    Reply

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