Tyne Folk


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Brookside Richard Monckton Milne

Brookisde image I wandered by a brookside, I wandered by a mill
I could not hear the water, the murmuring was still
Nor the sound of any grasshopper or the song of any bird
But the beating of my own heart was the only sound I heard

I lay beneath the elm tree to watch the long long shade
And as it grew still longer I did not feel afraid
I listened for a footfall, I listened for a word
But the beating of my own heart was the only sound I heard

With silent tears fast flowing then someone stood behind
A hand upon my shoulder, I knew the touch was kind
He drew me near and nearer, we neither spoke one word
But the beating of our own two hearts was the only sound I heard

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This song began life as a poem by Richard Monckton Milne. (1809-1885)

Barbary Berry thought this poem of love lent itself to a song and wrote her own tune which she sang with her husband Len when they performed as 'Portway Pedlars'.

I sang the song in front of Barbary Berry without realising she had made up the tune. Mary said I must keep singing the song.

The song is about a young man who was looking forward to his date with a young lass. He was nervous, and a little agitated! Eager to make a good impression.

He arrived early but she wasn't there, much to his concern. Increasingly nervous, he looked for her every way. Was she going to arrive? Had she decided not to come?

Disappointment, but embarrassed too at being left alone. But then she turns up, but late! What a relief, a smile and a shy welcome. All's well.

Mo Smith