The Oxford Book of Ballads - online book

A Selection Of The Best English Lyric Ballads Chosen & Edited by Arthur Quiller-Couch

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He has ridden, and she has run, And barefoot through the broom;
Yet was he never so courteous a knight As to say, 'Put on your shoon.'
' Ride softly,' she said, ' Childe Waters .'
O  why do you ride so fast ?
The child which is no man's but yours My body it will brast.'
He has ridden on high horseback,
And she 's run low beside, Until they came to a wan water—
I  think men call it Clyde.
Says, ' See'st yon water, Ellen,
That flows from bank to brim ?'—
' I trust to God, Childe Waters You will never see me swim.'
The firsten step Burd Ellen stept, The water came to her knee;
' Ochon, alas ! ' said Burd Ellen, ' Tins water's o'er deep for me !'
xv The neisten step Burd Ellen stept, The water came to her middle; And sighing said Burd Ellen, ' I've wetted my golden girdle !'
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