Verse > Anthologies > T. R. Smith, ed. > Poetica Erotica: A Collection of Rare and Curious Amatory Verse
T. R. Smith, comp.  Poetica Erotica: Rare and Curious Amatory Verse.  1921–22.
The Distressed Maid
(Date unknown)

AS I walked out one May morning,
  Down by a river side,
I overheard a couple discoursing,
  Which filled my heart with pride.
May the heavens bless you, fair maid,        5
  Sing me another song,
I wish you were my bride, he said.
  Kind sir, I am too young.
The younger that you are, my love,
  The better you are for me,        10
For I vow and do declare,
  I’ll wed no woman but thee.
He took me by the lily white hand
  He kissed both cheek and chin,
Then he took her to his marriage room,        15
  To sit awhile with him.
It was in the beginning of that night,
  They had both sport and play,
And all the latter part of that night
  Close in her arms did lay.        20
The night being gone and the day coming on
  The morning shone so clear,
This young man rose, put on his clothes,
  Saying, fare you well my dear.
Is that the promise you made to me,        25
  Down by the river side,
You promised to marry me,
  And make me your lawful bride.
If I promised to marry you,
  It’s more than I will do,        30
I never will wed with any one,
  So easy found as you.
Go home to your father’s garden,
  Sit down and cry your fill,
And when you think on what you’ve done,        35
  You may blame your own good will.
There is an herb in your father’s garden,
  And some do call it rue,
When fishes fly, and swallows dive,
  Young men they will prove true.        40
I wish I was a maid again,
  As I was this time last night,
I would not change my portion
  For either lord or knight.
There are other farmer’s daughters,        45
  To market they do go,
But I poor girl must stay at home,
  To rock the cradle, oh.
To rock the cradle, o’er and o’er,
  And sing the lullaby,        50
Was there e’er a maid in all this town
  So crossed in love as I.

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