(ONE MORNING IN MAY;
Sung by: James Clifton Ferrell
Recorded in Memphis, TN 6/30/63
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I saw a fair couple a-going that way.
One was a maiden, so fair and so gay;
The other was a soldier, a-going that way.
They had not proceeded but a mile or two
'Til out of a package a fiddle he drew.
Well, he played so sweetly that it made the woods ring.
"Hark, hark," says the lady, "Hear the nightingale sing."
"And now," said the lady, "Will you marry me?"
"Oh, no," said the soldier, "That never can be.
I've a wife in London, and children twice three.
One wife is a-plenty, too many for me.
"I'm going to bold London to stay for one year,
And instead of drinking water, my drink shall be beer,
And if I return, it will be in the spring,
To see the water sliding, hear the nightingale sing."
Also found in Randolph, Vol. I, #58, "One Morning in May"; Brown, Vol. III, #13, "One Morning in May"; Belden, p. 239, "The Nightingale."