COY MAIDENS O' DRYSAIL


Here is final poem in the story of Roger’s romantic adventures - sorry it's a bit late, but I got distracted by other things, as one does.

In the end Roger meets a visiting Scot (a drover’s daughter?) and finds in her something he seemed not to be able to find in the local Northamptonshire lasses.  The Kirk at Upton, incidentally is very much worth a visit.  The church (photo above) is virtually unchanged from Clare’s time, and the little village a reminder of how much of the county used to be.

Coy Maidens o' Drysail bonny Girls o' Buckhiven
Young beauty's o' Largo bonny Lasses o' Leven
I loved them the gether I loved one alone
And the rest followed with her Else I'd made her my own

Nay stop there auld Sodger Yo're nae kin o' her kind
She belongs to young Rodger our Shepherd—sae mind
Her voice shouted Rodger like throwing a stone
Sae gae on oud Sodger and let her alane

The voice it gaed through me like throwing a stone
And sair did it rue me knocking at my breast bone
Gae awa' wi' yer Rodger young Man do I see
If you'r then auld Sodger you may march on wi' me

Sae I went with the Maiden over heath and o'er plain
And when Sunday was come too I saw her again
I saw her and courted the sun from the West
And left my last kiss on the mole of her breast

I kissed and were married and bedded and a'
And the auld Kirk at Upton the green Wedding saw
For the grass it was green and our years was the same
And frae morning to E'en Nane ca'd us to blame

LP II 843

“Her voice shouted Rodger like throwing a stone” – as I child my mother, now in her 93rd year, often in the late afternoon would call me in for tea.  I could have been anywhere as we lived in the country, so she shouted my name at the top of her voice – I have experience of what ‘the voice it gaed through me’ sounds like.  The volume, the inflection… even the memory makes shudder just a little!

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