Sir Richard's song

from by Phil Edwards

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I followed my Duke ere I was a lover,
To take from England fief and fee;
But now this game is the other way over -
Now England has taken me!

I had my horse, my shield and banner,
And a young man's heart, so whole and free;
But now I sing in another manner -
Now England has taken me!

As for my Father in his tower,
Awaiting news of my ship at sea,
He will remember his own hour -
Tell him England has taken me!

As for my Mother in her bower,
That rules my Father so cunningly,
She will remember a maiden's power -
Tell her England has taken me!

As for my Brother in Rouen City,
A naughty, nimble page is he,
But he will come to suffer and pity -
Tell him England has taken me!

As for my little Sister waiting
In the pleasant orchards of Normandy,
Tell her youth is the time for mating -
Tell her England has taken me!

As for my comrades in camp and highway
That lift their eyebrows scornfully,
Tell them their way is not my way -
Tell them England has taken me!

You Kings and Princes and Barons famed,
You Knights and Captains in your degree;
Hear me a little before I am blamed -
Seeing England has taken me!

Howe’er so great man's strength be reckoned,
There are two things he cannot flee.
Love is the first, and Death is the second -
And Love in England has taken me!


from 52 Folk Songs: Orange, released June 11, 2012
Poem: Rudyard Kipling
Setting: Peter Bellamy
Phil Edwards: vocal, flute, zither




Phil Edwards Manchester, UK

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