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The Verner Raven; The Count of Vendel's Daughter

THE VERNER RAVEN THE COUNT OF VENDEL'S DAUGHTER AND OTHER BALLADS

BY GEORGE BORROW

LONDON: PRINTED FOR PRIVATE CIRCULATION 1913

_Copyright in the United States of America_ _by Houghton Mifflin & Co. for Clement Shorter_.

THE VERNER RAVEN

The Raven he flies in the evening tide, He in day dares not intrude; Whoever is born to have evil luck In vain may seek for good.

Lustily flies the Verner Raven, High o'er the wall he's flown, For he was aware that Irmindlin fair Sate in her bower alone.

He southward flew, and he northward flew, He flew high up in the cloud; And he beheld May Irmindlin Who sorrowing sate and sew'd.

"Now hear me, little Irmindlin, Why weep in this piteous way? For father or mother, or is it for brother, That adown thy cheek tears stray?"

It was Damsel Irmindlin, Swift out of the window looked she: "O who is he that will comfort me, And list to my misery?

"Hear thou, wild Raven, bird of Death, Fly thou hither down to me; And all my trouble and all my care I'll straight relate to thee.

"My father gave me the son of a king, We were fitted the one for the other, But he was into the Austrian land Dispatched by my cruel step-mother.

"So happily we should together have lived, For he my whole love won; But she wished to give me her sister's son, Who was liker a fiend than a man.

"I had a gallant brother once, Sir Verner by name was he, But he was transformed by my cruel step-dame And driven to a strange countrie."

"Hear thou, Damsel Irmindlin, What wilt thou give me, say? I'll carry thee straight to thy plighted youth, If with me thou wilt fly away."

"Thou shalt from me the ruddy gold, And the silver white receive; If thou bear me to my Bridegroom bold, And me from my woe relieve."

"Keep thou thyself thy silver and gold, Such gifts I do not crave; The first son thou conceivest of him, That, that from thee I'll have."

Then straight she took the Raven's foot, Laid that her white hand upon; She swore to him by her Christian faith, That he should have the son.

Then took he Damsel Irmindlin, He placed her on his back; Then flew he over the wild sea waves As fast as he could track.


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