Child's Ballads/35

From Wikisource
Jump to: navigation, search
Child's Collected Ballads by Francis James Child
Allison Gross, no. 35
For more information, see Wikipedia: Allison Gross.

Allison Gross[edit]

O ALLISON GROSS, that lives in yon towr,
The ugliest witch i the north country,
Has trysted me ae day up till her bowr,
An monny fair speech she made to me.
She stroaked my head, an she kembed my hair,
An she set me down saftly on her knee;
Says, Gin ye will be my lemman so true,
Sae monny braw things as I woud you gi.
She showd me a mantle o red scarlet,
Wi gouden flowrs an fringes fine;
Says, Gin ye will be my lemman so true,
This goodly gift it sal be thine.
‘Awa, awa, ye ugly witch,
Haud far awa, an lat me be;
I never will be your lemman sae true,
An I wish I were out o your company.’
She neist brought a sark o the saftest silk,
Well wrought wi pearles about the ban;
Says, Gin you will be my ain true love,
This goodly gift you sal comman.
She showd me a cup of the good red gold,
Well set wi jewls sae fair to see;
Says, Gin you will be my lemman sae true,
This goodly gift I will you gi.
‘Awa, awa, ye ugly witch,
Had far awa, and lat me be;
For I woudna ance kiss your ugly mouth
For a’ the gifts that ye coud gi.’
She’s turnd her right and roun about,
An thrice she blaw on a grass-green horn,
An she sware by the meen and the stars abeen,
That she’d gar me rue the day I was born.
Then out has she taen a silver wand,
An she’s turnd her three times roun an roun;
She’s mutterd sich words till my strength it faild,
An I fell down senceless upon the groun.
She’s turnd me into an ugly worm,
And gard me toddle about the tree;
An ay, on ilka Saturdays night,
My sister Maisry came to me,
Wi silver bason an silver kemb,
To kemb my heady upon her knee;
But or I had kissd her ugly mouth,
I’d rather a toddled about the tree.
But as it fell out on last Hallow-even,
When the seely court was ridin by,
The queen lighted down on a gowany bank,
Nae far frae the tree where I wont to lye.
She took me up in her milk-white han,
An she’s stroakd me three times oer her knee;
She chang’d me again to my ain proper shape,
An I nae mair maun toddle about the tree.