Courting the Widow's Daughter One Saturday night I went to a house, And through a dark entry I crept like a mouse I went for the purpose my true love to see She opened the door; I entered straightway And it's hard times. Such laughing and chatting as we did keep We waked the old lady right out of her sleep In a very few moments she thus addressed me: "What an impudent fellow before me I see!" And it's hard times. "Old lady, old lady, pray give me your hand And cease from your passions till you know who I am I am Billy the miller and go by that name For the purpose of courting your daughter I came." And it's hard times. "My daughter, my daughter, my daughter!" said she "To think that my daughter would go before me! When I am so old and she is so young, For her to get and I to get none- O it's hard times!" "Old lady, old lady, you speak with alarm; You are but a widow and have but few charms." "A widow I am and go by that name," So up with the broomstick and at me she came. O it was hard times! Such fighting and scuffling! At length I got free. I mounted my horse and the way I did flee, The blood running down my cheeks in full bloom, For there was never a poor fellow so broomsticked before And it's hard times. So now, young men, take warning by me And never a widow's daughter go see; For if you do you'll meet with your doom, For they fight like the devil and beat with the broom And it's hard times. DT #720 Laws H25 From Belden, Ballads and Songs (Missouri) Probably from the variety theater, and apparently built on the tune and refrain of the social satire "Song of Times" [HMB] SOF oct96
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