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films and computer games (Lemmings 2 for example). It deserves better. The song is a lament for a lost love
killed in battle. He will now take the "high road" (in heaven), while Moira (his love) stays on the "low road." They will never meet again in this life, but they will some day meet again, far above the bonnie banks of Loch Lomond.
The recording of the Corries has the verses in the order below, but it would make more sense to put the third verse ("I trysted my ain . . .") before the second ("O weel may I weep . . .").
O whither away (where are you going) my bonnie May,
Sae late an' sae far in the gloamin' (so far in the dusk)?
The mist gathers grey o'er moorland and brae (hill);
O whither sae far are ye roamin'?
O ye'll tak' the high road, an' I'll tak' the low;
I'll be in Scotland afore ye.
For me and my true love will never meet again
By the bonnie, bonnie banks o' Loch Lomond.
O weel (well) may I weep for yestreen (last night) in my sleep
we stood bride and bridegroom together.
But his arms and his breath were as cold as the death,
And his heart's blood ran red in the heather.
I trysted my ain (own) love last night in the broom (brush),
My Donald wha' loves me sae dearly.
For the morrow he will march for Edinburgh toon (town)
Tae fecht (to fight) for his King and Prince Chairlie.
As dauntless in battle as tender in love,
He'd yield ne'er a foot tae the foeman (enemy).
But never again frae (from) the field o' the slain
Tae his Moira will he come by Loch Lomond.
The thistle may bloom, the King hae his ain (have his own),
And fond lovers will meet in the gloamin'.
And me and my true love will yet meet again
Far above the bonnie banks o' Loch Lomond.
Thanks to PaulL for the correction
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