knittingknots (knittingknots) wrote,

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Song for the day....

This first piece is the MOST IMPORTANT piece of music in my writing play list.  It's an instrumental, but it's the one piece of music I can retreat into when my head is throbbing, my family's driving me crazy, and I can't think of anything to say. 

Funny thing is, it's an arrangement of a traditional folksong, which I also have on my playlist. It has such a different feel to it! I really like this version:

The lyrics are in Scots, not standard English: Evidently Robert Tannahill gets credit for the common lyrics going around, although there are variations out there.

Mirk and rainy is the nicht,
there's no' a staum in a' the carry
Lichtnin's gleam athwart the lift,
and cauld winds drive wi' winters fury.


Oh, are ye sleeping Maggie
Oh, are ye sleeping Maggie
let me in, for loud the linn is howling
ower the warlock Craigie.

Fearfu' soughs the boortree bank,
the rifted wood roars wild and dreary
Loud the iron yett does clank,
the cry of hoolits mak's me eerie.


Abune ma breath, I daurnae speak,
for fear I rouse your waukrife Daddy
Cauld's the blast upon my cheek,
O rise, O rise my bonnie lady.


She's ope'd the door, she's let him in,
she's cuist aside his dreepin plaidie
Blaw yer warst ye rain and wind,
for Maggie noo I'm an aside ye.

Noo since your waukin' Maggie,
noo since yer waukin' Maggie
What care I for hoolits cry,
for boortree bank or warlock Craigie.

Some notes based on notes I read from the Mudcat Cafe discussion of this song: "Waulkrife" = wake-full, unsleeping. "Boortree" = elderberry tree, so for, Fearfu' soughs the boortree bank. Boortree bank is the small hill or rise that has elderberry trees growing on or along it. Fearfu' soughs, are Fearful sighs. A description of the sounds of the wind blowing through the trees and landscape through which he is traveling. 

Hoolits cry refers to the sound of an owl.  Some feeling that in verse 4, it ought to be "she's let me in, I've cuist aside my dreepin plaidie, but that's life in the folk music world.

And is it there's not a staur or now a staum (storm) in all the carry (sky)

Some arguing about linn...was it a word that met wind, or a mishearing of wind? Counts who you ask.  I love seeing this type of talk about folk songs.
Tags: torch songs, video
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