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Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Loch Lomond - Traditional Scottish Song

By yon bonnie banks an' y yon bonnie braes
Whaur the sun shines bright on Loch Lomond
Whaur me an' my true love will ne'er meet again
On the bonnie, bonnie banks o' Loch Lomon'.

O ye'll tak' the high road, and Ah'll tak' the low road
And Ah'll be in Scotlan' afore ye
Fir me an' my true love will ne'er meet again
On the bonnie, bonnie banks o' Loch Lomon'.

'Twas there that we perted in yon shady glen
On the steep, steep sides o' Ben Lomon'
Whaur in purple hue, the hielan hills we view
An' the moon comin' out in the gloamin'

O ye'll tak' the high road, and Ah'll tak' the low road
And Ah'll be in Scotlan' afore ye
Fir me and my true love will ne'er meet again
On the bonnie, bonnie banks o' Loch Lomon'.

The wee birdies sing an' the wild flouers spring
An' in sunshine the waters are sleeping
But the broken heart it kens, nae second spring again,
Tho' the waeful may cease frae their weeping.

O ye'll tak' the high road, and Ah'll tak' the low road
And Ah'll be in Scotlan' afore ye
Fir me an' my true love will ne'er meet again
On the bonnie, bonnie banks o' Loch Lomon'.


While not a poem, I've never had a problem posting songs as poetry and I'm not about to start having a problem now.  Loch Lomond is a song heartbreaking and beautiful in equal measure.  While the actual context of the song is disputed (Jacobite uprising 1745? fairies transporting the souls of Scottish dead back from foreign lands? captured soldiers?) the message is not.  The singer and his true love will never meet again.  Never again will they bask in their love by the beauty of Loch Lomond.  The gorgeous imagery and fitting tune enhance the beauty and the sadness.  It's a resigned kind of sadness, the kind you speak with a smile, despite the tragedy.  It's simple and heartfelt and timeless.

Now, as I do with songs, an audio recording.  The lyrics vary slightly from the ones printed, but the idea is still the same.  As with all folk songs, there are endless lyric variations.  Just listen and enjoy.


Here's a version I sang with some friends in my senior year of college.  There are two songs in this file, the first of which is a setting of Non Nobis Domine.  Feel free to skip that.  In the Loch Lomond setting, I am the high tenor.
http://www.filedropper.com/03track031_1



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