The Dowie Dens of Yarrow

from The Seas Between Us by Sophie Ramsay

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lyrics

8. The Dowie Dens o Yarrow

There was a lady in the north,
I ne’er could find her marrow,
She was courted by nine gentlemen,
And a plooboy lad fae Yarrow.

These nine sat drinking at the wine,
Sat drinking wine in Yarrow;
And they’ve made a vow amang them aa,
Tae fecht for her on Yarrow.

She’s washed his face an' kaimed his hair,
As aft she’s daen afore O;
An she’s made him like a knight sae braw,
Tae fecht for her on Yarrow.

Then he’s gaed up thon high, high hills,
In tae the houms o Yarrow;
And it’s there he spied nine airmed men,
Come tae fecht wi him on Yarrow.

It’s three he slew and three they flew,
And three he’s wounded sairly;
But her brother John cam in ahin,
And he’s murdered him maist foully.

"Gae hame, gae hame, ye fause young man
And bring yer sister sorrow
For her ain true love lies pale and wan
On the Dowie Dens o' Yarrow

“Oh mither dear, I’ve dreamt a dream,
A dream o dule an sorrow;
I dreamt I was pu’in heather bells,
On the dowie dens o Yarrow.”

“Oh dochter dear, I’ve read your dream,
I doot it will bring sorrow;
For your ain true love he lies pale and wan,
On the dowie dens o Yarrow.”

Well she’s gaed up thon high, high hills,
Intae the houms o Yarrow;
And it’s there she spied her ain true love,
Lying pale an wan on Yarrow.

Her hair it was three-quarters lang,
The colour it was yellow;
An she’s tied it roon his middle sma,
An she’s borne him doun fae Yarrow.

“Oh, daughter dear, dry up your tear
And dwell no more in sorrow,
For I'll wed you to far higher degree
Than the ploughman boy fae Yarrow.”

“Oh faither dear, ye’ve seiven sons,
Ye maun wad them aa the morrow;
But the fairest flooer amang them aa,
Was the plooboy lad fae Yarrow.”

credits

from The Seas Between Us, released September 21, 2016

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Sophie Ramsay UK

Sophie Ramsay sings old and new folk: songs from her native Scotland alongside originals with poetic lyrics. ‘The Glassy Mountain' (2013): ‘undeniably beautiful’ (fRoots), 'Joanna Newsom meets Belle and Sebastian' (R2). ‘The Seas Between Us’ (2016): 'Atmospheric, elegant and beguiling.' (Songlines). ‘Deeply moving’ (fRoots). Sophie tours regularly with cellist singer Sarah Smout. ... more

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