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C.D. Warner, et al., comp.
The Library of the World’s Best Literature. An Anthology in Thirty Volumes. 1917.

Lady Anne (Lindsay) Barnard (1750–1825)

Auld Robin Gray

WHEN the sheep are in the fauld, when the kye’s a’ at hame,

And a’ the weary warld to rest are gane,

The waes o’ my heart fa’ in showers frae my e’e,

Unkent by my gudeman, wha sleeps sound by me.

Young Jamie lo’ed me weel, and sought me for his bride,

But saving ae crown-piece he had naething else beside;

To mak’ the crown a pound my Jamie gaed to sea,

And the crown and the pound—they were baith for me.

He hadna been gane a twelvemonth and a day

When my father brake his arm, and the cow was stown away;

My mither she fell sick—my Jamie was at sea—

And Auld Robin Gray came a-courting me.

My father couldna work, my mother couldna spin;

I toiled day and night, but their bread I couldna win:

Auld Rob maintained them baith, and wi’ tears in his e’e,

Said, “Jeanie, for their sakes, will ye no marry me?”

My heart it said na, and I looked for Jamie back:

But hard blew the winds, and his ship was a wrack;

His ship was a wrack—Why didna Jamie dee?

Or why am I spared to cry, Wae is me!

My father urged me sair—my mother didna speak,

But she looket in my face till my heart was like to break;

They gied him my hand—my heart was in the sea—

And so Robin Gray, he was gudeman to me.

I hadna been his wife a week but only four,

When, mournfu’ as I sat on the stane at my door,

I saw my Jamie’s ghaist—for I couldna think it he

Till he said, “I’m come hame, love, to marry thee.”

Oh! sair, sair did we greet, and mickle say of a’;

I gi’ed him ae kiss and bade him gang awa’.

I wish that I were dead, but I’m na like to dee,

For though my heart is broken, I’m but young, wae’s me!

I gang like a ghaist, and I carena much to spin;

I darena think on Jamie, for that would be a sin:

But I’ll do my best a gude wife to be,

For oh! Robin Gray he is kind to me.