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Elphinstone Kist   Traditional Ballad, Music

Cairn o Mount     by: Traditional

As I gaed in yon Brig o Dye
And ower yon hill o broom.
A maiden sang richt merrily
Jist as the sun gaed doon:
It’s Cairn o Mount is bleak an bare
And cauld is Clochnaben
And you can see the snaw lie there
Alang the simmer’s eyn.

I lighted aff my dapple grey
And walkéd by her side
Saying: ‘Lassie I hae lost my wife
Among yon moors sae wide,
But leeze me on your face sae fair
Yer een sae bonnie blue
The langest day I’d blithely spend
Tae kiss yer cherry mou.

‘O lassie wid ye gang wi me
And leave yer caulrife glen.
Wi aa my kin ye’d bear the gree
There’s wealth baith but an ben.
Wi silks and satins buskit braw
And ribbons for yer hair
And maids tae answer when ye call
What could ye wish for mair.

‘And lassie ye maun think a wee
My lands are far and wide
I’ve gold in banks, I’ve ships at sea
Sae come and be my bride.
My faither’s left me lairdships twa
A coach at my command
I wid mak ye lady o them aa
If ye’d but gae yer hand.’

‘Though Cairn o Mount is bleak an bare
Yer nae a match for me.
My Donald is my only care
Ride on and lat me be.
He meets me on yon hill sae green
His hairt is leal an true.
And If my Donald heard my angry shout
He seen wid mak ye rue.’

‘But lassie, think, yer Donald’s peer
He hisnae horse nor coo;
A shepherd struggling on yon moor
Is nae match for you.’
‘Though Cairn o Mount is bleak and bare
And cauld is Clochnaben
I wid raither meet my Donald here
Than be fair Scotland’s queen.’

‘Weel, Lassie, I am loth tae tell
But ye throw yer love awa.
Yer Donald brawly kens himsel
Last gloamin what I saw.
As I rode by his sheiling door
I spied a Heilan maid
And yer Donald kissed her ower and ower
And rowed her in his plaid.’

‘Though you wid swear wi solemn oath
The truth ye’ve told tae me,
Still I widna doot my Donald’s word
But say, “Fause loon, ye lee!”
But he’s thrown aff his lowland dress
Combed doon his yalla hair
Sayin, ‘Lassie, ye’ve been true tae me
And noo we’ll pairt nae mair.

‘Nae mair I’m shepherd o this glen
But laird ayont the Dee
And as ye hae proved true tae me
I will aye prove true tae thee.
And Cairn o mount is bleak and bare
And cauld is Clochnaben
And wee hae seen the snaw lie there
Alang the simmer’s eyn.’



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