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As I strayed forth one morning in May,
Down by the green bushes I chanced for to stray;
I spied a fair damsel, she appeared like a queen,
She was spreading her clothes on the beaches so green.
I stepped up close to her and then I did say,
Saying, you are the fairest that e'er I have seen;
It is six months or better since it ran in my mind,
That we would be married if you were inclined.
To get married, to get married I think I'm too young,
Besides, all ye young men have a flattering tongue;
My Dada and Mama would be angry with me,
If I married a rover, a rover like thee.
The young man got up and then walked away,
Saying, you will get better whoe'er they might be;
For the sky it looks cloudy I think we'll agree,
They shook hands and they parted on the beaches so green.
Come back, bonny laddie, come say you'll be mine,
For the last word you spoke, love, it altered my mind.
If it altered your mind, love, it is all in vain
I'll go courting some other on the beaches so green.
Some marry for riches, the proud haughty way,
More marry for beauty, the flower will decay;
But if e'er I get married it's plain ye may see,
That the one who proves true is the girl for me.
Collected in 1951 from Mrs. McCarthy of Renews, NL, and published in MacEdward Leach And The Songs Of Atlantic Canada © 2004 Memorial University of Newfoundland Folklore and Language Archive (MUNFLA).
A variant was also collected in 1959 from Nicholas Keough of Parson's Pond NL, by Kenneth Peacock and published as The Beach Of Strablane in Songs Of The Newfoundland Outports, Volume 2, pp.499-500, by The National Museum of Canada (1965) Crown Copyrights Reserved.
And a similar but shorter variant was collected in 1951 from Mr. M. Curran [b.1890] of Calvert, NL, and published as The Banks Of Tralee in MacEdward Leach And The Songs Of Atlantic Canada © 2004 Memorial University of Newfoundland Folklore and Language Archive (MUNFLA).