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​The Bonny Swans

This song is by Loreena McKennitt and appears on the album The Mask And Mirror (1994).

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The Bonny Swans
A farmer there lived in the north country
A hey ho bonny o
And he had daughters one, two, three
The swans swim so bonny o
These daughters they walked by the river's brim
A hey ho bonny o
The eldest pushed the youngest in
The swans swim so bonny o


Oh sister, oh sister, pray lend me your hand
With a hey ho a bonny o
And I will give you house and land
The swans swim so bonny o
I'll give you neither hand nor glove
With a hey ho a bonny o
Unless you give me your own true love
The swans swim so bonny o


Sometimes she sank, sometimes she swam
With a hey ho and a bonny o
Until she came to a miller's dam
The swans swim so bonny o


The miller's daughter, dressed in red
With a hey ho and a bonny o
She went for some water to make some bread
The swans swim so bonny o


Oh father, oh daddy, here swims a swan
With a hey ho and a bonny o
It's very like a gentle woman
The swans swim so bonny o
They placed her on the bank to dry
With a hey ho and a bonny o
There came a harper passing by
The swans swim so bonny o


He made harp pins of her fingers fair
With a hey ho and a bonny o
He made harp strings of her golden hair
The swans swim so bonny o
He made a harp of her breast bone
With a hey ho and a bonny o
And straight it began to play alone
The swans swim so bonny o


He brought it to her father's hall
With a hey ho and a bonny o
And there was the court, assembled all
The swans swim so bonny o
He laid the harp upon a stone
With a hey ho and a bonny o
And straight it began to play lone
The swans swim so bonny o


And there does sit my father the King
With a hey ho and a bonny o
And yonder sits my mother the Queen
The swans swim so bonny o
And there does sit my brother Hugh
With a hey ho and a bonny o
And by him William, sweet and true
The swans swim so bonny o
And there does sit my false sister, Anne
With a hey ho and a bonny o
Who drowned me for the sake of a man
The swans swim so bonny o

TriviaEdit

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Wikipedia has an article on
The Bonny Swans

This song has a theme very similar to - and is possible based on - a folk ballad called The Twa Sisters.