Anonymous Americas

(1000-1950 / United States)

Twa Sisters O' Binnorie


There were twa sisters sat in a bow'r;
(Binnorie, O Binnorie!)
A knight cam' there, a noble wooer,
By the bonny mill-dams o' Binnorie.
He courted the eldest wi' glove and ring,
(Binnorie, O Binnorie!)
But he lo'ed the youngest aboon a' thing,
By the bonny mill-dams o' Binnorie.
The eldest she was vexed sair,
(Binnorie, O Binnorie!)
And sair envìed her sister fair,
By the bonny mill-dams o' Binnorie.

Upon a morning fair and clear,
(Binnorie, O Binnorie !)
She cried upon her sister dear,
By the bonny mill-dams o' Binnorie.

`O sister, sister, tak' my hand,'
(Binnorie, O Binnorie!)
`And let's go down to the river-strand,'
By the bonny mill-dams o' Binnorie.

She's ta'en her by the lily hand,
(Binnorie, O Binnorie!)
And down they went to the river-strand
By the bonny mill-dams o' Binnorie.

The youngest stood upon a stane,
(Binnorie, O Binnorie!)
The eldest cam' and pushed her in,
By the bonny mill-dams o' Binnorie.

'O sister, sister, reach your hand!'
(Binnorie, O Binnorie!)
'And ye sall be heir o' half my land'--
By the bonny mill-dams o' Binnorie.

'O sister, reach me but your glove!'
(Binnorie, O Binnorie!)
'And sweet William sall be your love'--
By the bonny mill-dams o' Binnorie.

Sometimes she sank, sometimes she swam,
(Binnorie, O Binnorie!)
Till she cam' to the mouth o' yon mill-dam,
By the bonny mill-dams o' Binnorie

Out then cam' the miller's son
(Binnorie, O Binnorie!)
And saw the fair maid swimmin' in,
By the bonny mill-dams o' Binnorie.

'O father, father, draw your dam!'
(Binnorie, O Binnorie!)
'There's either a mermaid or a swan,'
By the bonny mill-dams o' Binnorie.

The miller quickly drew the dam,
(Binnorie, O Binnorie!)
And there he found a drown'd womàn,
By the bonny mill-dams o' Binnorie.

Round about her middle sma'
(Binnorie, O Binnorie!)
There went a gouden girdle bra'
By the bonny mill-dams o' Binnorie.

All amang her yellow hair
(Binnorie, O Binnorie!)
A string o' pearls was twisted rare,
By the bonny mill-dams o' Binnorie.

On her fingers lily-white,
(Binnorie, O Binnorie!)
The jewel-rings were shining bright,
By the bonny mill-dams o' Binnorie.

And by there cam' a harper fine,
(Binnorie, O Binnorie!)
Harpèd to nobles when they dine,
By the bonny mill-dams o' Binnorie.

And when he looked that lady on,
(Binnorie, O Binnorie!)
He sigh'd and made a heavy moan,
By the bonny mill-dams o' Binnorie.

He's ta'en three locks o' her yellow hair,
(Binnorie, O Binnorie!)
And wi' them strung his harp sae rare,
By the bonny mill-dams o' Binnorie.

He went into her father's hall,
(Binnorie, O Binnorie!)
And played his harp before them all,
By the bonny mill-dams o' Binnorie.

And sune the harp sang loud and clear,
(Binnorie, O Binnorie!)
`Fareweel, my father and mither dear!'
By the bonny mill-dams o' Binnorie.

And neist when the harp began to sing,
(Binnorie, O Binnorie!)
'Twas 'Fareweel, sweetheart!' said the string,
By the bonny mill-dams o' Binnorie.

And then as plain as plain could be,
(Binnorie, O Binnorie!)
'There sits my sister wha drownèd me!
By the bonny mill-dams o' Binnorie.'

Submitted: Thursday, January 01, 2004

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