A lady walked in yon wild wood
Beneath the holly tree
It was there she saw two bonnie bairns
There running at her knee
And the first she pulled a red, red rose
With hands as soft as silk
And the next she pulled a lily pale
With hands more white than milk
"Why do you pull the red, red rose
And why the lily white?"
"We need them at the seat of grace
For the soul of thee tonight."
"Oh bide with me you bonnie bairns
I'll dress you rich and fine
And for all the blackbirds in the woods
You'll eat white bread and wine."
The stars were shooting to and fro
But the thorns she did abhor
As the lady followed the bonnie bairns
For three long hours and more
"Where do you dwell you bonnie bairns
I'm woe and weary grown"
"We live where woe it never comes
In a land to flesh unknown."
They came unto a tree of beech
Two names carved in the bark
"Do you see your name carved here lady
The other lies in the dark."
And she wept in vain and she wept full sore
For her love laid in the ground
And she wept until the stars gave way
'Til the dawn it brought no sound