Maid of sweet Gurteen


Come all you gentle muses, come by and lend an ear
Whilst I unfold the praises of this comely lady fair
‘twas the curling of her yellow locks that stole away my heart
And it’s death I’m sure will be the cure if she and I must part

The praises of this comely maid I’m going to unfold
Her hair hangs o’er her shoulders in lovely links of gold
With carriage neat her limbs complete, it fractured quite my brain
And skin more fairer than the swan that swims the purling stream.

‘twas of her cruel father, the cause of all my woe
He locked her in a closed room and would not let her go
It’s often I watched her window in hope she might be seen
Perchance to get another sight of the maid of sweet Gurteen

And two or three days, her parents did prepare
To send my maid away from me to a place I know not where
I’ll search to find my darling, wherever she may be
For here in pain, I can’t remain for the maid of sweet Gurteen

My father, he did come to me and this to me did say
‘Oh son, dear son, be advised by one, don’t throw yourself away
To marry a poor country girl whose parents are so mean
So stay at home and do not roam but along with me remain’

‘Oh father, dearest father, don’t part me from my dear
I would not part my darling for ten thousand pounds a year
Was I possessed of William’s crown, of her I’d make my queen
Of a high renown, I’d wear the crown for the maid of sweet Gurteen.’

Now to conclude and make an end, I’ll take my pen in hand
John O’ Brien, it is my name and Flowereel is my land
My days were spent in merriment when my darling first I’d seen
Now I’m alone upon the road in a place called sweet Gurteen