A chieftain to the Highlands bound,
Cries, "Boatman, do not tarry!
And I'll give thee a silver pound,
To row us o'er the ferry."
"Now, who be ye would cross Loch-Gyle
This dark and stormy water?"
"Oh! I'm the chief of Ulva's isle,
And this, Lord Ullin's daughter.
"And fast before her father's men
Three days we've fled together,
For should he find us in the glen,
My blood would stain the heather.
"His horsemen hard behind us ride;
Should they our steps discover,
Then who will cheer my bonny bride,
When they have slain her lover?"
Out spoke the hardy Highland wight
"I'll go, my chief—I'm ready:
It is not for your silver bright,
But for your winsome lady:
"And, by my word! the bonny bird
In danger shall not tarry;
So, though the waves are raging white,
I'll row you o'er the ferry."
By this, the storm grew loud apace,
The water wraith was shrieking;
And, in the scowl of heaven, each face
Grew dark as they were speaking.
But still, as wilder grew the wind,
And as the night grew drearer,
Adown the glen rode armed men,
Their trampling sounded nearer.
"Oh I haste thee, haste!" the lady cries
"Though tempest round us gather,
I'll meet the raging of the skies,
But not an angry father."
The boat has left the stormy land,
A stormy sea before her;
When, oh I too strong for human hand,
The tempest gathered o'er her.
And still they rowed, amid the roar
Of waters fast prevailing;
Lord Ullin reached that fatal shore,
His wrath was changed to wailing.
For sore dismay through storm and shade
His child he did discover;
One lovely hand she stretched for aid,
And one was round her lover.
"Come back! come back!" he cried, in grief,
"Across this stormy water;
And I'll forgive your Highland chief,
My daughter! O, my daughter!"
'T was vain: the loud waves lashed the shore,
Return or aid preventing;
The waters wild went o'er his child,
And he was left lamenting.