The Highland Widow's Lament

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Oh, I am come to the low countrie,
Och on, och on, och rie![1]
Without a penny in my purse,
To buy a meal to me.

It was na sae in the Highland hills,
Och on, och on, och rie!
Nae woman in the country wide
Sae happy was as me.

For then I had a score o' kye,[2]
Och on, och on, och rie!
Feeding on yon hills so high,
And giving milk to me.

And there I had threescore o' yowes,[3]
Och on, och on, och rie!
Skipping on yon bonnie knowes,[4]
And casting woo' to me.

I was the happiest of a' the clan,
Sair, sair may I repine;
For Donald was the brawest man,
And Donald he was mine.

Till Charlie Stuart cam' at last,
Sae far to set us free;
My Donald's arm was wanted then
For Scotland and for me.

Their waefu'[5] fate what need I tell?
Right to the wrang did yield:
My Donald and his country fell
Upon Culloden field.

Och on, O Donald O!
Och on, och on, och rie!
Nae woman in the warld wide
Sae wretched now as me.


  1. Scots transliteration of Gaelic "O Dhòmhnaill, O Dhòmhnaill, O chridhe" meaning "O Donald, O Donald, O heart" or "Ochón, ochón, a chridhe" meaning "Alas, alack, O heart"
  2. Cattle
  3. Ewes
  4. Knolls
  5. Sad

This work was published before January 1, 1924, and is in the public domain worldwide because the author died at least 100 years ago.