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Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed. Poems of Places: An Anthology in 31 Volumes.
England: Vols. I–IV. 1876–79.


Carlisle Yetts

By Anonymous

WHITE was the rose in his gay bonnet,

As he faulded me in his broached plaidie,

His hand whilk clasped the truth luve,

O it was ay in battle ready!

His long, long hair in yellow hanks

Waved o’er his cheeks sae sweet and ruddie;

But now they wave o’er Carlisle yetts

In dripping ringlets clotting bloodie.

My father’s blood ’s in that flower-tap,

My brother’s in that hare-bell’s blossom,

This white rose was steeped in my luve’s blood,

An’ I ’ll ay wear it in my bosom.


When I came first by merry Carlisle,

Was ne’er a town sae sweetly seeming;

The White Rose flaunted owre the wall,

The thristled banners far were streaming!

When I came next by merry Carlisle,

O sad, sad seemed the town an’ eerie!

The auld, auld men came out an’ wept,

“O maiden, come ye to seek yere dearie?”


There ’s ae drop o’ blude atween my breasts,

An’ twa in my links o’ hair sae yellow;

The tane I ’ll ne’er wash, an’ the tither ne’er kame,

But I ’ll sit an’ pray aneath the willow.

Wae, wae upon that cruel heart,

Wae, wae upon that hand sae bloodie,

Which feasts in our richest Scottish blude,

An’ makes sae mony a doleful widow.