The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #15944   Message #2890296
Posted By: Jim Dixon
19-Apr-10 - 09:28 PM
Thread Name: Lyr Req/ADD: Winter / When the Trees Are All Bare
Subject: Lyr Add: WINTER (Thomas Brerewood)
This seems to be the ancestor of the above songs, from before lots of folk-processing happened.

From A Select Collection of English Songs by Joseph Ritson (London: J. Johnson, 1783), Vol. 1, page 232:

Thomas Brerewood, Esq.

1. When the trees are all bare, not a leaf to be seen,
And the meadows their beauty have lost;
When nature's disrob'd of her mantle of green,
And the streams are fast bound with the frost:

2. While the peasant inactive stands shivering with cold,
As bleak the winds northerly blow;
And the innocent flocks run for ease to the fold,
With their fleeces besprinkled with snow:

3. In the yard when the cattle are fodder'd with straw,
And they send forth their breath like a steam;
And the neat-looking dairy-maid sees she must thaw
Flakes of ice that she finds in the cream:

4. When the sweet country maiden, as fresh as a rose,
As she carelessly trips often slides;
And the rustics laugh loud, if by falling she shows
All the charms that her modesty hides:

5. When the lads and the lasses for company join'd,
In a crowd round the embers are met,
Talk of fairies, and witches that ride on the wind,
And of ghosts, till they're all in a sweat:

6. Heaven grant in this season it may be my lot,
With the nymph whom I love and admire,
While the icicles hang from the eaves of my cot,
I may thither in safety retire!

7. Where in neatness and quiet, and free from surprise,
We may live, and no hardships endure;
Nor feel any turbulent passions arise,
But such as each other may cure.