Digital Tradition Mirror

Fair William and Lady Maisry

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Fair William and Lady Maisry

Fair William was an Earl's son and lived down by the strand.
Lady Maisry was the King's one daughter and lived on upper land.
Lady, Maisry was the first woman to drink with him the wine
And, as the healths went 'round and 'round, says, "William, you'll
     be mine."

"Oh, you must come to my bower, Willie, when the evening bells are rung
And you must come to me bower, Willie, when the evening mass is sung."
Well, he has mounted his chestnut steed and ridden to the King's own hall.
He's tied him there and climbed the rock and walked upon the wall.

The King's life guards they heard the noise and towards him they have ran,
But he's took his sword from out his sheath and killed them to a man.
Now he is on to Maisry's bower so softly cross the floor.
He's cannily knocked the wood thereat and said, "Unlatch the door-"

With feet as white as driven snow, she's walked her bower within
And with her fingers fine and long she's let Fair William in-
She's leaned down low, down to her toe, to loose her lover's shoes,
But cold, cold were the drops of blood that fell from off his sword.

"What a frightful sight to see, my love. What a frightful sight to see.
How come this blood upon your sword, my true love, tell to me?"
"As I came by the woods this night, the wolf stalked after me.
Should I have killed the wolf, my love, or let the wolf slay me?"

They hadn't kissed not once, not once, as lovers when they meet,
When up he woke the King himself from out his drowsy sleep.
"Where are my guards led by my son, my son and only heir?
I hear a din inside my hall- A stranger, he lies near. "

In then he came, her father dear, with a broad sword by his side.
He's struck a blow to Fair William that's wounded deep and wide.
"Woe be to you, father," she said, "and an ill death may you see,
For you have killed Fair William, who would have married me."

"This night he's slain my own house guards, a dozen stout bold men.
Likewise he's slain your brother John, to me worth
"If William's killed my own brother, I'm sure he's not to blame,
For, just this night, he a plot contrived, to have Fair William slain."

She's rung her hands and tore her hair, so sorely felt she sad
And through the woods and fields she's run, Sweet Maisry has gone mad.

Child #70
From Bonny Bunch of Roses

Thanks to Mudcat for the Digital Tradition!

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