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Three Songs

Word count: 224

Song Cycle by Samuel Hans Adler (b. 1928)

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1. But I was young and foolish [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English

Translation(s): FRE FRI GER

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Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • FRE French (Français) (Pierre Mathé) , copyright © 2016, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • FRI Frisian (Geart van der Meer) , "Bij de marswâl", copyright © 2013, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • GER German (Deutsch) (Sharon Krebs) , copyright © 2015, (re)printed on this website with kind permission


Down by the Salley Gardens my love and I did meet;
She passed the Salley Gardens with little snow-white feet.
She bid me take [love]1 easy, as the leaves grow on the tree;
But I, being young and foolish, with her [did]2 not agree.

In a field by the river my love and I did stand,
And on my leaning shoulder she laid her snow-white hand.
She bid me take life easy, as the grass grows on the weirs;
But I was young and foolish, and now am full of tears.


View original text (without footnotes)
Retitled "Down by the Salley Gardens" with the subtitle "An old song re-sung" when republished in Poems in 1895.
Note: "salley" is an anglicized form of the Irish word "saileach", which means willow.

1 Gurney: "life"
2 Gurney: "would"

Submitted by Ted Perry

2. Old age

Language: English

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[--- This text is not currently
in the database but will be added
as soon as we obtain it. ---]

3. Time, you old gypsy man [ sung text not yet checked against a primary source]

Language: English

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Time, you old gypsy man,
  Will you not stay
Put up your caravan
   just for one day ?

All things I'll give you
Will you be my guest,
Bells for your jennet,
Of silver the best.
Goldsmiths shall beat you
A great golden rings,
Peacocks shall bow to you,
Little boys sing,
Oh, and sweet girls will
Festoon you with may.

Time, you old gypsy,
Why hasten away?
Last week in Babylon,
last night in Rome,
Morning, and in the crush
Under Paul's dome;
under Paul's dial
You tighten your rein-
Only a moment,
And off once again;
Off to some city
Now blind in the womb,
Off to another
Ere that's in the tomb.

Time, you old gypsy man,
   Will you not stay,
Put up your caravan
   Just for one day ?


Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator]

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