Three Maidens a-Milking

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Melody - Collected from Dorset, England; Seq. by Ron Clarke
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See also this related song.

Three maidens a-milking did go
Three maidens a-milking did go
And the wind it did blow high
And the wind it did blow low
And it quivered their pails to and fro.

2. They met with a man by the way
And one of them to him did say
Kind sir have you the will,
And kind sir have you the skill
For to catch little birds off the tree ?

3. O yes I will show you some skills
And very good skills they be too
If you'll come along with me
To yonder shady tree
I will catch you a small bird or two.

4. To the merry greenwood they all went
To the merry greenwood they all went
For the birds they did whistle
On every green thistle
For they very well knew their intent.

5. I laid my love under a bush
I laid my love under a tree
And he beat at the bush
And the bird it did fly in
A little above my love's knee.

6. Then her sparkling eyes turned around
As if she had been in a swound
And she said, upon my word
I have caught a little bird
Picking upon its own ground.

7. Pretty maidens be ruled by me
Pretty maidens be ruled by me
Never catch a small bird
Upon a green ground
But catch them upon the green tree.

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