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Child Waters

No: 63; variant: 63F

  1. LORD THOMAS stands in his stable-door, Seeing his steeds kaimd down; Lady Ellen sits at her bower-door, Sewing her silver seam.
  2. ‘O will ye stay at hame, Ellen, And sew your silver seam? Or will ye to the rank highlands? For my lands lay far frae hame.’
  3. ‘I winna stay at hame, Lord Thomas, And sew my silver seam; But I’ll gae to the rank highlands, Tho your lands lay far frae hame.’
  4. ‘An asking, an asking, Lord Thomas, I pray thee grant it me; How many miles into your fair tower, And house where you would be?’
  5. ‘Your asking fair, lady Ellen,’ he says, ‘Shall now be granted thee; For to my castle where it stands Is thirty miles and three:’ ‘O wae is me,’ says Lady Ellen, ‘It will never be run by me.’
  6. But up and spak the wily pyot, That sat upon the tree: ‘Sae loud, sae loud, ye fause, fause knight, Sae loud as I hear you lie!
  7. ‘For to your dwelling-house,’ it says, ‘Of miles it’s scantly three:’ ‘O weel is me,’ says Lady Ellen; ‘It shall be run by me.’
  8. ‘O mither, mither, mak my bed, And mak it braid and wide, And lay my little page at my feet, Whatever may betide.’
  9. ‘An asking, an asking, Lord Thomas, I pray thee grant it me; O grant me a cup of cold water, Between my young son and me.’
  10. ‘What you do ask, Lady Ellen, Shall soon be granted thee; The best bread and the best wine, Between my young son and thee.’
  11. ‘I ask again , my good Lord Thomas, I ask again of thee; The poorest cot-house in your land, Between my young son and me.’
  12. ‘Your asking now, dear Lady Ellen, I quickly grant to thee; The best bower about my tower, Between my young son and thee.’