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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 SOF
Thanks to Mudcat for the Digital Tradition!