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Black is the Colour of My True Love's Hair
But Black is the colour of my true love's hair.
His face is like some rosy fair,
The prettiest face and the neatest hands,
I love the ground whereon he stands.
I love my love and well he knows,
I love the ground whereon he goes,
If you no more on earth I see,
I can't serve you as you have me.

The winter's passed and the leaves are green,
The time is passed that we have seen,
But still I hope the time will come
When you and I shall be as one.

I go to the Clyde for to mourn and weep,
But satisfied I never could sleep.
I'll write to you a few short lines,
I'll suffer death ten thousand times.

So fare you well, my own true love
The time has passed, but I wish you well.
But still I hope the time will come
When you and I will be as one.

I love my love and well he knows,
I love the ground whereon he goes.
The prettiest face, the neatest hands,
I love the ground whereon he stands.

This popular (as in some non-folk fanatics may have heard of it) folk song seems to have spread through the US starting in the Appalachians. It must have been braught there from Scotland by some musically inclined immigrents (of which there is no short supply of about the Appalachian Mountains). When she goes "...to the Clyde for to mourn and weep" the song then likely referes to the River Clyde, though I can also imagine the poor girl weeping in front of a Clydesdale (or perhaps she's seeing a therapist named Clyde).

Like any good folk song, there are many versions out there. In this version the reason for the lover's seperation is unclear, but in some the boy is explicitly a soldier who's been sent off to war. There are also transex versions, with a male singer pining for his missing girl. The adjetives used to describe the lover vary, but are usually positive. Except, of course, in my favorite version: Black is the colour of my true love's heart (appears in a novel of the same name, by Ellis Peters).

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