(Old Smoky)
Sung by: Mrs. Alice Isringhouse
Recorded in Holly Grove, AR 6/15/59

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On top of Old Smokey,
All covered with snow,
Where I lost my true lover
By courting too slow.

Now courting's a pleasure,
And parting is grief,
But a false-hearted true love
Is worse than a thief.

A thief can but rob you,
And take what you have,
But a false-hearted true love
Will take you to your grave.

The grave will decay you
And turn you to dust.
Only one boy out of twenty
That a poor girl can trust.

It's raining, it's hailing,
And the moon gives no light.
Your horses can't travel,
This dark stormy night.

So put up your horses
And feed them some hay.
Come sit down beside me
As long as you stay.

My horses aren't hungry;
They won't eat your hay.
So fare you well, darling;
I'll feed on my way.

Your parents are against me.
Mine are the same,
So put me down on your book, love;
It troubles my name.

I'll go up on Old Smokey,
On the mountain so high,
Where the wild bees and the turtledoves
Can hear my sad cry.

As soon as the dewdrops
Grow on the green mound,
Last night she was with me;
Tonight she is gone.

Now, cuckoo, she's a pretty bird;
She sings as she flies.
She brings you glad tiding,
And tells you no lies.

They will tell you they love you,
Just to keep your heart ease,
And when they are from you,
They love whom they please.

They will tell you they love you,
They will tell you more lies
Than the crossties in the railroads
Or the stars in the sky.

Now I can love little,
Or I can love long.
I can love an old sweetheart
'Til a new one comes on.

I can hug, I can kiss them,
Or I can prove to them kind,
Or I can turn my back on them,
And also my mind.

Also found in Brown, Vol. III, #253, "Old Smoky."

All Songs Recorded by John Quincy Wolf, Jr., unless otherwise noted

The John Quincy Wolf Folklore Collection
Lyon College, Batesville, Arkansas
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