Digital Tradition Mirror

North Country Maid (2)

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North Country Maid (2)

A North Country maid up to London had strayed,
Although with her nature it did not agree,
Which made her repent, and so bitterly lament.
Oh I wish once again for the North Country.

Oh the oak and the ash and the bonnie ivy tree
They flourish at home in my own country

O fain would I be in the North Country,
Where the lads and the lasses are making of hay,
There should I see what is pleasant to me,
A mischief light on them entic'd me away!

I like not the court, nor the city resort,
Since there is no fancy for such maids as me
Their pomp and their pride I can never abide,
Because with my humor it does not agree.

How oft have I been in the Westmoreland green
Where the young men and maidens resort for to play
Where we with delight, from morning till night
Could feast it and frolic on each holiday.

The ewes and their lambs, with the kids and their dams
To see in the country how finely they play
The bells they do ring and the birds they do sing
And the fields and the gardens are pleasant and gay

At wakes and at fairs, being freed of all cares
We there with our lovers did use for to dance
Then hard hap I had, my ill fortune to try
And so up to London my steps to advance

But still I perceive, I a husband might have
If I to the city my mind could but frame
But I'll have a lad that is North Country bred
Or else I'll not marry, in the mind that I am

A maiden I am and a maid I'll remain
Until my own country again I do see
For here in this place, I shall ne'er see the face
Of him that's allotted my love for to be

Then farewell my daddy and farewell my mammy
Until I do see you, I nothing but mourn
Rememb'ring my brothers, my sisters and others
In less than a year, I hope to return.

from Cole, Folksongs of England, Ireland, Scotland, & Wales

Thanks to Mudcat for the Digital Tradition!

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