There were two loving brothers, two brethren were born
Two brethren whose trades we still keep;
The one was a ploughman, a planter of corn,
The other a tender of sheep.
Come, all jolly ploghboys, come help me for to sing,
I'll sing in the praise of the plough,
For though we must labour from summer to spring
We all will be merry boys now.
We've hir-ed, we've mir-ed, through mire and through clay,
No pleasure at all could we find;
Now we'll laugh, dance and sing, and drive care away,
No more in this world to repine.
Here's April, here's May, here's June and July,
'Tis a pleasure to see the corn grow;
In August we moil it, shear low and reap high,
And bind up our scythes for to mow.
So now we have gathered up every sheaf,
And scrape-ed up every ear;
We'll make no more to-do, but to plough and to sow,
And provide for the very next year.
Lucy Broadwood and J A Fuller Maitland. 1893, English County Songs
, Leadenhall Press, London
"From Mrs Squarey, fragment only of words and tune; remainder supplied from a Hampshire version in The Besom Maker
by Heywood SUmner, Esq."
(Search Roud index at VWML) Take Six