No: 65; variant: 65A
- THE young lords o the north country
Have all a wooing gone,
To win the love of Lady Maisry,
But o them she woud hae none.
- O they hae courted Lady Maisry
Wi a’ kin kind of things;
An they hae sought her Lady Maisry
Wi brotches an wi’ rings.
- An they ha sought her Lady Maisry
Frae father and frae mother;
An they ha sought her Lady Maisry
Frae sister an frae brother.
- An they ha followd her Lady Maisry
Thro chamber an thro ha;
But a’ that they coud say to her,
Her answer still was Na.
- ‘O had your tongues, young men,’ she says,
‘An think nae mair o me;
For I’ve gien my love to an English lord,
An think nae mair o me.’
- Her father’s kitchy-boy heard that,
An ill death may he dee!
An he is on to her brother,
As fast as gang coud he.
- ‘O is my father an my mother well,
But an my brothers three?
Gin my sister Lady Maisry be well,
There’s naething can ail me.’
- ‘Your father and your mother is well,
But an your brothers three;
Your sister Lady Maisry’s well,
So big wi bairn gangs she.’
- ‘Gin this be true you tell to me,
My mailison light on thee!
But gin it be a lie you tell,
You sal be hangit hie.’
- He’s done him to his sister’s bowr,
Wi meikle doole an care;
An there he saw her Lady Maisry,
Kembing her yallow hair.
- ‘O wha is aught that bairn,’ he says,
‘That ye sae big are wi’
And gin ye winna own the truth,
This moment ye sall dee.’
- She turnd her right an roun about,
An the kem fell frae her han;
A trembling seizd her fair body,
An her rosy cheek grew wan.
- ‘O pardon me, my brother dear,
An the truth I’ll tell to thee;
My bairn it is to Lord William,
An he is betrothd to me.’
- ‘O coud na ye gotten dukes, or lords,
Intill your ain country,
That ye draw up wi an English dog,
To bring this shame on me?
- ‘But ye maun gi up the English lord,
Whan youre young babe is born;
For, gin you keep by him an hour langer,
Your life sall be forlorn.’
- ‘I will gi up this English blood,
Till my young babe be born;
But the never a day nor hour langer,
Tho my life should be forlorn.’
- ‘O whare is a’ my merry young men,
Whom I gi meat and fee,
To pu the thistle and the thorn,
To burn this wile whore wi?’
- ‘O whare will I get a bonny boy,
To help me in my need,
To rin wi hast to Lord William,
And bid him come wi speed?’
- O out it spake a bonny boy,
Stood by her brother’s side:
‘O I would rin your errand, lady,
Oer a’ the world wide.
- ‘Aft have I run your errands, lady,
Whan blawn baith win and weet;
But now I’ll rin your errand, lady,
Wi sat tears on my cheek.’
- O whan he came to broken briggs,
He bent his bow and swam,
An whan he came to the green grass growin,
He slackd his shoone and ran.
- O whan he came to Lord William’s gates,
He baed na to chap or ca,
But set his bent bow till his breast,
An lightly lap the wa;
An, or the porter was at the gate,
The boy was i the ha.
- ‘O is my biggins broken, boy?
Or is my towers won?
Or is my lady lighter yet,
Of a dear daughter or son?’
- ‘Your biggin is na broken, sir,
Nor is your towers won;
But the fairest lady in a’ the lan
For you this day maun burn.’
- ‘O saddle me the black, the black,
Or saddle me the brown;
O saddle me the swiftest steed
That ever rade frae a town.’
- Or he was near a mile awa,
She heard his wild horse sneeze:
‘Mend up the fire, my false brother,
It’s na come to my knees.’
- O whan he lighted at the gate,
She heard his bridle ring:
‘Mend up the fire, my false brother,
It’s far yet frae my chin.
- ‘Mend up the fire to me, brother,
Mend up the fire to me;
For I see him comin hard an fast
Will soon men’t up to thee.
- ‘O gin my hands had been loose, Willy,
Sae hard as they are boun,
I would have turnd me frae the gleed,
And castin out your young son.’
- ‘O I’ll gar burn for you, Maisry,
Your father an your mother;
An I’ll gar burn for you, Maisry,
Your sister an your brother.
- ‘An I’ll gar burn for you, Maisry,
The chief of a’ your kin;
An the last bonfire that I come to,
Mysel I will cast in.’