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Bonny Baby Livingston Bonny Annie Livingston went out to see the play By came the laird of Glenlion and he's taen her quite away He set her on a milk-white steed, himself upon a gray He's taen her o'er the Highland hills and taen her quite away When they came to Glenlion's gate, They lighted on the green; There was mony a bonny lad and lass To welcome the lady hame. They led hir through high towers and bowers, And through the buling-green, And ay when they spake Erse to hir The tears blinded hir een. Says, The Highlands is no for me, kind sir, The highlands is no for me; If that ye would my favour win, Take me unto Dundee. "Dundee!' he says, "Dundee, lady! Dundee you shall never see, Upon the laird of Glenlion Soon wadded shall ye be." When bells were rung and mass was sung, And all were bound for bed, And bonny Annie Livingston By her bridegroom was laid. "It's O gin it were day!" she says, "It's O gin it were day! O if that it were day," she says, "Nae langer wad I stay." "Your horse stands in a good stable, Eating both corn and hay, And you are in Glenlion's arms, Why should ye weary for day?" "Glenlion's arms are good enough, But alas! the'r no for me; If that you would my fevour win, Take me unto Dundee. "Bat fetch me paper, pen and ink, and candle that I may see, And I'll go write a long letter To Georgie in Dundee. "Where will I get a bonny boy, That will win hose and shoon, That will gang to my ain true-luve, And tell him what is done?" Then up then spake a bonny boy, Near to Glenlion's kin, Says, Many time I hae gane his erand, But the lady's I will rin. O when he came to broken brigs He bent his bow and swam, And when he came to grass growing Set down his feet and ran. And when he came to Dundee gate Lap clean outoer the wa; Before the porter was thereat, The boy was in the haa. "What news? what news, bonny boy? What news hes thou to me?" "No news, no news," said bonny boy, "But a letter unto thee." The first three lines he looked on, A loud laughter gied he, But or he wan to the hinder en The tears blinded his eie. "Gae saddle to me the black," he says, "Gae saddle to me the broun, Gae saddle to me the swiftest steed That eer took man to towen." He burst the black unto the slack, The browen unto the brae, But fair fa on the siller-gray That carried him ay away! When he came to Glenlion's yett, He tirled at the pin, But before that he wan up the stair The lady she was gone. O I can kiss thy cheeks, Annie, O I can kiss thy chin, O I can kiss thy clay-cold lips, Though there be no breath within. "Deal large at my love's buriell The short bread and the wine, And gin the morn at ten o clock ye may deal as mukle at mine." The taen was biried in Mary's kirk, The tither in St. Mary's quire, And out of the taen there grew a birk, And the ither a bonny brier. And ay they grew, and ay they threw, Till they did meet aboon, And a' that ere the same did see Knew they had true lovers been. Child #222 From Bronson, Singing Tradition of Child's Popular Ballads While the ballad certainly tells a story, it is primarily made up of stock verses [SOF] SOF oct97
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