Stay in the Field
DESCRIPTION: Chorus: "Stay in the field, Stay in the field o warrior, Stay on the field, 'Til the war is ended." Verse: "My eyes are turned to the heavenly gate, I'll keep on my way or I'll be too late" "Green trees burning, why not dry, My Saviour died, why not I"
EARLIEST DATE: 1899 (Barton); 1893 (Dett) (see notes)
KEYWORDS: nonballad religious war Devil floatingverses Jesus
FOUND IN: US(SE)
REFERENCES (3 citations):
Barton, p. 27, "Stay in the Field" (1 text, 1 tune)
Dett, p. 22, "Stay in de Field" (1 text, 1 tune; p. 103 in the 1901 edition) [for 1893 edition, see notes]
ADDITIONAL: John Wesley Work, Folk Song of the American Negro (Nashville: Fisk University, 1915 ("Digitized by the Internet Archive")), p. 71, "Stay in the Field" (1 text)
NOTES [109 words]: Work has this text on a page headed "Songs of Courage." The other song, "March on and you shall gain the victory" and "This is the year of Jubilee, You shall gain the victory," also refers simultaneously to the war against slavery and the war against Satan. - BS
Dett's verses include the floater, "The tallest tree in Paradise, The Christians call the Tree of Life." The second and fourth line of each verse is "Until the war is ended."
The index to the 1893 edition [of Dett] has "Stay in the field" on page 103 (Thomas P. Fenner and Frederic G. Rathbun, Cabin and Plantation Songs (New York: G.P. Putnam's Sons, 1893)). I have not seen page 103. - BS
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