Song Of The Old Maid

The sun it was sinking, the neet it was fair, 

An’ sweet was the breath of the calm summer air ; 

The last merry notes of a skylark shrill, 

Hed deed on the heights of a neighb’ring hill ; 

The evening sang of the deep-toned thrush 

Was poured fra a twig on a hawthorn bush ; 

An’ I, i’ the twilight was walking alone, 

When I heeard a voice sing in a piteous tone, 

“ O, I am fifty and three ! ”

 

“ Ah, me ! ” it exclaimed, with a deep-drawn sigh, 

“ I shall nivver be married, me time hes gone by ; 

Me charms they hev wither’d an’ deed away 

Like the once green leaves on an autumn’s day ; 

Me youth it is fled, and me beauty gone,

An’ I feel that grim tyrant, old age, creeping on ;

Now pale are me cheeks, where once bloomed the rose,

And, ah ! I hev scarcely a tooth i’ my jaws,

For I am fifty and three. ”

 

“ Full well I remember when I war sixteen,

I was fair as a lily, and proud as a queen ; 

An’ wharivver I went — to the dance or the fair, 

Then lovers in plenty would wait on me there. 

But none of them got a kind word from me, 

I wanted a man of much higher degree ; 

But now I’m forsaken, me hopes are all fled, 

An’ I’ll shiv’ring creep to me cold, lone bed, 

For I am fifty and three. ” 

 

“ All Ionely I sit through the lang summer day, 

Without a companion to while time away; 

An’ I starve i’ me bed on a cowd winter’s neet, 

Wi’ a shawl round my heead, an’ hot bricks at me feet. 

Will naa man come forrad an’ mak me a wife ?

For I’m weary, indeed, of my desolate life ; 

I’ve plenty to itt, an’ to drink, an’ au that, 

But I’ve nothing to love but a lazy Tom-Cat, 

For I am fifty and three. ” 

 

Saa now, au ye lasses, ’at's turn’d twenty-yan, 

Don’t be saa consated i’ t’ choice of a man ; 

Don’t set yersels up wi’ a heigh, scornful air, 

But strike for a bargain whal t’ buyer bids fair ; 

For youth is like summer — swift passin’ away, 

An’ soon ye’ll be like to a cowd winter’s day ; 

Yer strength will be wasted, yer beauty decay’d, 

An’ ye’ll finnd ye’ll be nowt but a stingy owd maid, 

When ye are fifty and three.