william allingham
the girls lamentation
lyrics

With grief and mourning I sit to spin;

My Love pa**ed by, and he didn't come in;

He pa**es by me, both day and night,

And carries off my poor heart's delight.

There is a tavern in yonder town,

My Love goes there and he spends a crown;

He takes a strange girl upon his knee,

And never more gives a thought to me.

Says he, 'We'll wed without loss of time,

And sure our love's but a little crime;'-

My apron-string now it's wearing short,

And my Love he seeks other girls to court.

O with him I'd go if I had my will,

I'd follow him barefoot o'er rock and hill;

I'd never once speak of all my grief

If he'd give me a smile for my heart's relief.

In our wee garden the rose unfolds,

With bachelor's-buttons and marigolds;

I'll tie no posies for dance or fair,

A willow-twig is for me to wear.

For a maid again I can never be,

Till the red rose blooms on the willow tree.

Of such a trouble I've heard them tell,

And now I know what it means full well.

As through the long lonesome night I lie,

I'd give the world if I might but cry;

But I mus'n't moan there or raise my voice,

And the tears run down without any noise.

And what, O what will my mother say?

She'll wish her daughter was in the clay.

My father will curse me to my face;

The neighbours will know of my black disgrace.

My sister's buried three years, come Lent;

But sure we made far too much lament.

Beside her grave they still say a prayer-

I wish to God 'twas myself was there!

The Candlemas crosses hang near my bed;

To look at them puts me much in dread,

They mark the good time that's gone and past:

It's like this year's one will prove the last.

The oldest cross it's a dusty brown,

But the winter winds didn't shake it down;

The newest cross keeps the colour bright;

When the straw was reaping my heart was light.

The reapers rose with the blink of morn,

And gaily stook'd up the yellow corn;

To call them home to the field I'd run,

Through the blowing breeze and the summer sun.

When the straw was weaving my heart was glad,

For neither sin nor shame I had,

In the barn where oat-chaff was flying round,

And the thumping flails made a pleasant sound.

Now summer or winter to me it's one;

But oh! for a day like the time that's gone.

I'd little care was it storm or shine,

If I had but peace in this heart of mine.

Oh! light and false is a young man's kiss,

And a foolish girl gives her soul for this.

Oh! light and short is the young man's blame,

And a helpless girl has the grief and shame.

To the river-bank once I thought to go,

And cast myself in the stream below;

I thought 'twould carry us far out to sea,

Where they'd never find my poor babe and me.

Sweet Lord, forgive me that wicked mind!

You know I used to be well-inclined.

Oh, take compa**ion upon my state,

Because my trouble is so very great.

My head turns round with the spinning wheel,

And a heavy cloud on my eyes I feel.

But the worst of all is at my heart's core;