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A REFUGE FOR POETS WHO WRITE IN THE LYRIC TRADITION,

WITH RHYME AND METER, WITH OR WITHOUT MUSIC




PRETTY SARO

Way down in the valley in some lonesome place,
I wish no better pastime than to be with my love.
But she says she wont have me, so that I understand,
She wants a freeholder, and I have no land.

I cannot maintain her with silver or gold,
Nor buy her all the fine things that a big house can hold.
Farewell, pretty Saro, I will bid you adieu,
And Im going to ramble this whole world all through.

Tis not the long journey that Im dreading to go,
Nor leaving the country for the debts that I owe.
Theres nothing that grieves me nor troubles my mind
Like leaving pretty Saro, my darling, behind.

If I were a poet and could write a fine hand,
Id write my love a letter so that she may understand.
I would send it by the river where the waters do flow,
And think of pretty Saro wherever I go.

If I were a white dove and had wings and could fly,
This night to my loves window I know I would draw nigh.
In her lily white arms all the night I would lay,
And Id watch them little windows till the dawn of the day.

Traditional Appalachian



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