The Butcher Boy
traditional ballad from England*


In Moore Street where I did dwell
A butcher boy, I loved right well
He courted me, my life away
And now with me, he will not stay

Oh, I wish, I wish, I wish in vain
I wish I was a maid again
A maid again I ne'er will be
'Till aplles grow on an ivy tree

She went upstairs to go to bed
And calling to her mother said:
Bring me a chair 'till I sit down
And a pen and ink 'till I write down

Oh, I wish, I wish, I wish in vain
I wish I was a maid again
A maid again I ne'er will be
'Till aplles grow on an ivy tree

He went upstairs and the door he broke
He found her hanging from a rope
He took his knife and he cut her down
And in her pocket, these words he found

Oh, dig my grave large, wide and deep
Lay a marble stone at my head and feet
And in the center a turtle dove
So the world might know, that I died of love

Oh, I wish, I wish, I wish in vain
I wish I was a maid again
A maid again I ne'er will be
'Till aplles grow on an ivy tree



*Since the song is adapted by many singers in Ireland as well as in the USA, the place of the story has often changed, also other details in the song have changed. Here I edited the lyrics of a version I recorded in Midleton, a little town in Ireland (East of Cork) in July 2015

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