Digital Tradition Mirror

Murdered By a Brother

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Murdered By a Brother

"Oh, come from out the chamber in sadness and its gloom
And look abroad on nature, its beauty and its gloom
The air is clad with verdure, music on ev'ry tree
Come forth, my sister Helen, come forth and walk with me."

She came forth at his bidding with timid step and wee
Her eyes were wet with weeping and deathly pale her cheeks
Though as a summer's morning, so balmy was the air
As if from cold to guard her, her mantle she did wear.

He led her through the garding and o'er a meadow green
Way down a lonely valley which lay dark hills between
And through a tangled forest, though not a word he spoke
Until it appeared before them - a broad and shining lake.

It lay in quiet beauty and ruffled by a breeze
Reflecting the blue heaven and the surrounding trees
And as the sun shone on it, it looked like a dazzling sheen
It looked like a silver mirror set in its frame of green.

And there among the bushes and on the margin grew
A little skiff lie fastened, which he did quick undo
And handing in his sister, he pushed it from the shore
Away they rode in silence for half a league or more.

At length he broke the silence with words of dreadful import
To tarry but for earnestness though seemed he yet in sport
He says, "My sister Helen," with low harsh words he spoke
"There is a fearful reckoning and here it must be made.

"My mother's heart is broken, my father bowed in shame
By which this deep dishonor has brought on his honored name
And as they mark the anguish they would have heard from me
My heart has burned within me to be revenged on thee.

"On thee or on that villain by whom the deed was wrought
By which this deep dishonor upon her name has brought
With me upon these waters he sailed last evening fair
This morning he sleeps beneath them, you shall go join him there."

"What mean you brother Richard," she questioned with alarm,
"Why stare you so upon me, you would not do me harm?"
There rose a cry for mercy, there was a stifling groan
A splash into the water and he rowed back alone.

DT #758
Laws F12
From Flanders, Ballard, Brown, and Barry, New Green Mountain Songster
collected from Josiah Kennison of Townsend VT

Thanks to Mudcat for the Digital Tradition!

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