Familiar Songs - Their Authors & Histories

300 traditional songs, inc sheet music with full piano accompaniment & lyrics.

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The moon had climbed the highest hill,
Which rises o'er the source of Dee, And from the eastern summit shed
Her silver light on tower and tree ; When Mary laid her down to sleep,
Her thoughts on Sandy, far at sea; When soft and low, a voice was heard,
Say, " Mary, weep no more for me."
She from her pillow gently raised
Her head, to ask who there might be — She saw young Sandy shivering stand,
With visage pale and hollow e'e;— " O, Mary, dear ! cold is my clay,
It lies beneath a stormy sea; Far, far from thee, I sleep in death ; —
So, Mary, weep no more for me!
" Three stormy nights and stormy days,
We tossed upon the raging main; And long we strove our bark to save, —
But all our striving was in vain. E'en then, when horror chilled my blood,
My heart was filled with love for thee; The storm is past, and I at rest; —
So, Mary, weep no more for me !
"O, maiden, dear, thyself prepare,—
We soon shall meet upon that shore Where love is free from dOURt and care,
And thou and I shall part no more." Loud crowed the cock, the shadow fled,
No more of Sandy could she see ; But soft the passing spirit said,
" Sweet Mary, weep no more for me! '*
The most wandering of all Bohemians was the Scottish poet and American ornithol­ogist, Alexander Wilson. He was born in Paisley, Scotland, July 6, 1766. His father was a distiller in a small way, but, for the son, the parents aspired to the church. His mother died when he was but ten years old, and three years afterward his father married again, and he was apprenticed to a weaver. From his mother he had inherited a love for books and music, and he had made good use of school instruction. For several years he worked steadily at a distasteful occupation, writing poems all the time in secret. He was fond of Nature, and finally his trade became so intolerable that he sought her in a way not generally connected with romance. He strapped a peddler's pack across his shoulders, and began pilgrimages over hill and through valley, writing as the spirit seized him, and keeping a minute diary of all he saw. We recall the opinion of the sage Andrew Fair-service, in "Rob Roy," as to the traveling merchant: " It's a creditable calling,and a gainfu', and has lang been in use wi' our folk."
When twenty-three years old, the wandering bard had enough of the confidence of age and the enthusiasm of youth, to venture to offer his poems for publication. They were refused; but a year after their rejection, he had accumulated means enough to print them himself, and carried them around the country with his other wares. Money failed to roll in upon the tradesman who was " book-learned," and fame refused to come at the call of a poet who was wielding a yard-stick; so the wants of the man who was behind both, compelled him to return to the loom once more.
A society had been established in Edinburgh for debate from literary aspirants, and Mr. Wilson prepared a poem upon a subject appointed by the committee—the comparative merits of Ramsay and Ferguson. He dOURled his hours of labor to earn the money which carried him to the capital with his manuscript, entitled " The Laurel Disputed," arrived in time to repeat it in the " Forum," and remained several weeks trying to find a market for both poetry and prose, but returned to his workshop disappointed. Here he met Burns, and a year later he published a ballad called " Watty and Meg," which brought him into notice, and was pronounced worthy of Burns.
Scotland seems to have an unhappy faculty for getting rid of her brightest sons. A satire written in defence of the hand-loom operators of Paisley, so outraged their employ-

E-Book - An Annotated Compendium of Old Time American Songs by James Alverson III