"Sir Roland"

Vernon Hill

Ballads Weird and Wonderful (1912)




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Single Greeting Card (with matching Envelope)

Code: VH BWW M24 SGC
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Reproduction on 8x12'' sheet

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Reproduction on 12x18'' sheet

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Sir Roland



When he came to his ain love's bower,

He tirlèd at the pin,

And sae ready was his fair fause love

To rise and let him in.


"O welcome, welcome, Sir Roland," she says,

"Thrice welcome thou art to me;

For this night thou wilt feast in my secret bower,

And to-morrow we'll wedded be." –


"This night is Hallowe'en," he said,

"And to-morrow is Hallowday;

And I dream'd a dreary dream yestreen,

That has made my heart fu' wae.


"I dream'd a dreary dream yestreen,

And I wish it may come to gude;

I dream'd that ye slew my best gewhound,

And gied me his lapper'd blude."


"Unbuckle your blt, Sir Roland," she said,

"And set you safely down." –

"O your chamber is very dark, fair maid,

And the night is wondrous lown." –


"Yes, dark, dark is my secret bower,

And lown the midnight may be;

For there is none waking in a' this tower,

But thou, my true-love, and me."


.   .   .   .   .


She has mounted on her true-love's steed,

By the ae light of the moon;

She has whippèd him and spurrèd him,

And roundly she rade frae the town.


She hadna ridden a mile frae the gate,

A mile but barely ane,

When she was aware of a tall young man,

Slow riding o'er the plain.


She turn'd her to the right about,

Then to the left turn'd she,

And aye, 'tween her and the wan moonlight,

The tall knight did she see.

And he was riding burd-alane

On a horse as black as jet;

But, though she follow'd him fast and fell,

No nearer could she get.


"O stop! O stop! young man," she said,

"For I in dule am dight;

O stop, and win a fair lady's love,

If ye be a leal true knight."


But nothing did the tall night say,

And nothing did he blin;

Still slowly rade he on before,

And fast she rade behind.


She whipp'd her steed, she spurre'd her steed,

Till his breast was all a-foam;

But nearer to that tall young knight,

By Our Lady, she could not come.


"O if ye be a gay young knight,

As well I trow you be,

Pull tight your bridle reins, and stay

Till I come up to thee."


"But nothing did that tall knight say,

And no whit did hi blin,

Until he reach'd a broad river's side,

And there he drew his rein.


"O is this water deep?" he said,

"As it is wondrous dun;

Or is it sic as a sackless maid

And a leal true knight may swim?" –


"The water is deep," she said,

"As it is wondrous dun;

But it is sic as a sackless maid

And a leal true knight may swim."


The knight spurr'd on his tall black steed;

The lady spurr'd on her brown;

And fast they rade into the fleed,

And fast they baith swam down.

"The water weets my tae," she said;

The water weets my knee;

Haud up my bridle reins, sir knight,

For the sake of Our Ladie." –


"If I should help thee now," he said,

"It were a deadly sin,

For I have sworn ne'er to trust a fair may's word,

Till the water weets her chin." –


"O the water weets my waist," she said,

"Sae does it weet my skin;

And my aching head rins round about,

The burn makes sic a din.


"The water is waxing deeper still,

Sae does it wax mair wide;

And aye the farther we ride on,

Farther off is the other side.


"O help me now, thou fause, fause knight,

Hae pity on my youth,

For now the water jows o'er my head,

And it gurgles in my mouth."


The knight turn'd right and round about,

All in the middle stream;

And he stretch'd out his hand to that lady,

But loudly she did scream.


"O this is Hallow-morn," he said,

"And it is your bridal day;

But sad would be that gay wedding,

If the bridegroom were away.


"Then ride on, ride on, proud Margaret,

Till the water comes o'er your bree;

For the bride maun ride deep, and deeper yet,

That rides this ford wi' me.


"Turn round, turn round, proud Margaret,

Turn round, and look on me;

Thou hast kill'd a true knight under trust,

And his ghost now links wi' thee."