Trooper and Maid

No: 299; variant: 299A

  1. One evening as a maid did walk, The moon was shining clearly, She heard a trooper at the gates, She thought it was her dearie. She’s taen his horse then by the head, And led him to the stable, And gien to him baith corn and hay, To eat what he was able. Bonny lass, gin I come near you, Bonny lass, gin I come near you, I’ll gar a’ your ribbons reel, Bonny lass, or eer I lea you.
  2. She’s taen the trooper by the hand, And led him to the table, And furnishd him wi bread and cheese, To eat what he was able. She’s taen the wine-glass in her hand, Poured out the wine sae clearly; ‘Here is your health an mine,’ she cried, ‘And ye’re welcome hame, my deary!
  3. ‘A glass o wine for gentlemen, And bonny lads for lasses, And bread and cheese for cavaliers, And corn and hay for asses.’ Then she went but and made his bed, She made it like a lady, And she coost aff her mankie gown, Says, Laddie, are you ready?
  4. Then he coost aff his big watch-coat, But and his silken beaver, A pair o pistols frae his side, And he lay down beside her. ‘Bonny lassie, I am wi you now, Bonny lassie I am wi you, But I’ll gar a’ your ribbons reel, Bonny lassie, ere I lea you.’
  5. The trumpet sounds thro Birldale, Says, Men and horse, make ready; The drums do beat at Staneman hill, ‘Lads, leave your mam and daddie.’ The fifes did play at Cromley banks, ‘Lads, leave the lewes o Fyvie;’ And then the trooper he got up, Says, Lassie, I must lea you.
  6. ‘Bonny lassie, I maun lea you now, Bonny lassie, I maun lea you; But if ever I come this road again, I will come in and see you.’
  7. She’s taen her gown out-ower her arms, And followed him to Stirling, And aye the trooper he did say, O turn ye back, my darling. ‘O when will we twa meet again? Or when will you me marry?’ ‘When rashin rinds grow gay gowd rings, I winna langer tarry.’
  8. ‘O when will we twa meet again? Or when will you me marry?’ ‘When heather-knaps grow siller taps, I winna langer tarry.’ ‘O when will we twa meet again? Or when will you me marry?’ ‘When heather-cows grow owsen-bows, I winna langer tarry.’
  9. ‘O when will we twa meet again? Or when will you me marry?’ ‘When cockle-shells grow siller bells, I winna langer tarry.’ ‘O when will we twa meet again? Or when will you me marry?’ ‘When apple-trees grow in the seas, I winna langer tarry.’
  10. ‘O when will we twa meet again? Or when will you me marry?’ ‘When fishes fly, and seas gang dry, I winna langer tarry.’ ‘O when will we twa meet again? Or when will you me marry?’ ‘When frost and snaw shall warm us a’, I winna langer tarry.’
  11. ‘Yestreen I was my daddie’s dow, But an my mamy’s dawtie; This night I gang wi bairn to you, Wae’s me that I eer saw thee!’ ‘Yestreen ye were your daddie’s dow, But an your mammie’s dawtie; But gin ye gang wi bairn to me, Ye may rue that eer ye saw me.
  12. ‘O turn back, my bonny lass, And turn back, my dearie; For the Highland hills are ill to climb, And the bluidy swords woud fear ye.’