The Brown Girl

No: 295; variant: 295A

  1. ‘I am as brown as brown can be, My eyes as black as a sloe; I am as brisk as a nightingale, And as wilde as any doe.
  2. ‘My love has sent me a love-letter, Not far from yonder town, That he could not fancy me, Because I was so brown.
  3. ‘I sent him his letter back again, For his love I valu’d not, Whether that he could fancy me Or whether he could not.
  4. ‘He sent me his letter back again, That he lay dangerous sick, That I might then go speedily To give him up his faith.’
  5. Now you shall hear what love she had Then for this love-sick man; She was a whole long summer’s day In a mile a going on.
  6. When she came to her love’s bed-side, Where he lay dangerous sick, She could not for laughing stand Upright upon her feet.
  7. She had a white wand all in her hand, And smoothd it all on his breast; ‘In faith and troth come pardon me, I hope your soul’s at rest.
  8. ‘I’ll do as much for my true-love As other maidens may; I’ll dance and sing on my love’s grave A whole twelvemonth and a day.’