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LADY GRISEL BAILLIE

1665-1746

441                               Werena my Heart licht I wad dee

THERE ance was a may,1 and she loed na men;
She biggit2 her bonnie bowr doun in yon glen;
But now she cries, Dool and a well-a-day!
Come doun the green gait3 and come here away!
When bonnie young Johnnie cam owre the see,
He said he saw naething sae lovely as me;
He hecht4 me baith rings and mony braw things
And werena my hearts licht, I wad dee.
He had a wee titty5 that loed na me,
Because I was twice as bonnie as she;
She raised sic a pother twixt him and his mother
That werena my hearts licht, I wad dee.
The day it was set, and the bridal to be:
The wife took a dwam6 and lay doun to dee;
She maned and she graned out o dolour and pain,
Till he vowd he never wad see me again.
His kin was for ane of a higher degree,
SaidWhat had he do wi the likes of me?
Appose7 I was bonnie, I wasna for Johnnie
And werena my hearts licht, I wad dee.
They said I had neither cow nor calf,
Nor dribbles o drink rins thro the draff,
Nor pickles8 o meal rins thro the mill-ee
And werena my hearts licht, I wad dee.
His titty she was baith wylie and slee:
She spied me as I cam owre the lea;
And then she ran in and made a loud din
Believe your ain een, an ye trow not me.
His bonnet stood ay fu round on his brow,
His auld ane lookd ay as well as somes new:
But now he lets t wear ony gait it will hing,9
And casts himsel dowie10 upon the corn bing.
And now he gaes daundring about the dykes,
And a he dow do is to hund11 the tykes:
The live-lang nicht he neer steeks12 his ee
And werena my hearts licht, I wad dee.
Were I but young for thee, as I hae been,
We should hae been gallopin doun in yon green,
And linkin13 it owre the lily-white lea
And wow, gin I were but young for thee!

1 may: maid.

2 biggit: built.

3 gait: way, path.

4 hecht: promised.

5 titty: sister.

6 dwam: sudden illness. 35b

7 appose: suppose.

8 pickles: small quantities.

9 hing: hang.

10 dowie: dejectedly.

11 hund the tykes: direct the dogs.

12 steeks: closes.

13 linkin: tripping arm-in-arm.

 

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