Sung by: Almeda Riddle
Recorded on 5/14/70

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“. . . Willie’s rare, my Willie’s fair,
My Willie’s wondrous bonnie.
My Willie has promised he would marry with me,
If he ever did marry with any.

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

“Sister, dear, I’ll tell your dream,
And it doth mean sorrow,
For you’ll get a letter e’er it is e’en.
Your lover’s drowned in the Yarrow.”

She looked for him upstream, searched for him down,
With much distress and sorrow.
She found him where the heather grew green
On the bonnie banks of the Yarrow.

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

“Last night my bed was made full wide;
Tonight it shall be narrow.
No man shall ever sleep by my side;
My Willie’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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