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Wiltshire Community History

Folk Song Information

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Book TitleAuthorDateNotes
Song TitleI wandered by a brookside
Roud No.2418
Collected FromSirman, Leah Miss
LocationStanton Harcourt
Collected ByWilliams, Alfred
Alternative Title
Source PrimaryWSRO: 2598/36 Packet 3 - Oxfordshire: Williams, A: MS collection No Ox 301
Source SecondaryUnpublished
Song Lyrics
Verse 1

I wandered by a brookside, I wandered by a mill,
I could not hear the water, for the murmuring wheel was still;
Nor the hum of any grasshopper, nor the chirp of any bird,
For the beating of my own heart, was the only sound I heard.

Verse 2

I sat beneath the elm tree, and watched its long, long shade,
And as it grew still longer, I did not feel afraid;
I listened for a footfall, I listened for a word,
But the beating of my own heart, was the only sound I heard.

Verse 3

There was silent tears fast flowing, when someone stood behind,
With his hand upon my shoulder, I knew the touch was kind;
He drew me near and nearer, we neither spoke one word,
But the beating of our own two hearts, was the only sound I heard.
Print Song Lyrics
Note 1

Williams, ALfred: FSUT: 'A sweet old song. I first heard of it through David Sawyer, the shearer, whose mother sang it over eighty years ago. I was recently fortunate enough to obtain the whole piece through Miss Leah Serman, Stanton Harcourt, Oxfordshire. She learned it of her grandmother, many years ago.'

Note 2

Attached to the manuscript is a letter, probably in the hand of Leah Serman, addressed to Williams at Dryden Cottage, South Marston. The Census 1901 has the spelling Sirman.

Note 3

This appears on the LP: Portway Pedlars [Len and Barbara Berry]: In the greenwood. Greenwich Village, GVR 229, 1984. Side 2, Track 2. The tune was composed by Barbara Berry.

Transcribed and edited by Chris Wildridge, 2010.



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