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Songs

The trees they grow so high

by Benjamin Britten

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Text

The trees they grow so high
English source: Anon.

The trees they grow so high
And the leaves they grow so green.
And many a cold winter’s night
My love and I have seen.
Of a cold winter’s night,
My love, you and I alone have been,
Whilst my bonny boy is young
He’s a-growing.
Growing, growing.
Whilst my bonny boy is young
He’s a-growing.

O father, dearest father.
You’ve done to me great wrong,
You’ve tied me to a boy
When you know he is too young.
O daughter. dearest daughter,
If you wait a little while,
A lady you shall be
While he’s growing.
Growing, growing,
A lady you shall be
While he’s growing.

I’ll send your love to college
All for a year or two,
And then in the mean-time
He will do for you;
I’ll buy him white ribbons,
Tie them round his bonny waist
To let the ladies know
That he’s married.
Married, married,
To let the ladies know
That he’s married.

I went up to the college
And I looked over the wall,
Saw four-and-twenty gentlemen
Playing at bat and ball.
I called for my true love,
But they would not let him come,
All because he was a young boy
And growing.
Growing, growing,
All because he was a young boy
And growing.

At the age of sixteen
He was a married man,
And at the age of seventeen
He was a father to a son;
And at the age of eighteen
The grass grew over him.
Cruel death soon put an end
To his growing.
Growing, growing,
Cruel death soon put an end
To his growing.

And now my love is dead
And in his grave doth lie.
The green grass grows o’er him
So very, very high.
I’ll sit and I’ll mourn
His fate until the day I die,
And I’ll watch all o’er his child
While he’s growing.
Growing, growing,
And I’ll watch all o’er his child
While he’s growing.

Composer

Benjamin Britten

Edward Benjamin Britten, Baron Britten (22 November 1913 – 4 December 1976) was an English composer, conductor and pianist. He was a central figure of 20th-century British classical music, with a range of works including opera, other vocal music,…

Poet

Performances

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