Sung by: Almeda Riddle

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(Mrs. Riddle: “I think I’ll pull my shoes off. My feet are killing me. The shoes are big but my feet are burning. And I just sing better barefooted -- you see, I am from the hills.”)

“My Willie’s rare, and he’s so fair,
My Willie’s wondrous bonny,
And he has promised he’d marry with me,
If he ever did marry with any.

“But sister, dear, I’ve had this dream,
And I fear it means sorrow.
I dreamed I pulled the heather green
On the bonny banks of Yarrow.”

“Now sister, dear, I’ll tell your dream,
And it does mean sorrow.
You’ll get . . . it is . . .
For Willy’s been drowned in the Yarrow.”

She looked upstream, she looked downstream,
With much distress and sorrow.
She found him where the heather was green
On the bonny banks of Yarrow.

Her hair, it was three quarters long,
The color being yellow.
She tied it ‘round his middle small;
Thus pulled him from the Yarrow.

“Last night I made my bed full . . .
Tonight it will be narrow.
No man shall ever sleep by my side;
My Willy’s drowned in the Yarrow.”

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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