Afton Water

Original Text: 
James Ingram, The Scots Musical Museum (1787-1803.) IV. 1792. Facs. edn.: Scolar Press, 1991. M 1746 J6853 1991 MUSI.
2Flow gently, I'll sing thee a song in thy praise;
3My Mary's asleep by thy murmuring stream,
4Flow gently, sweet Afton, disturb not her dream.
5Thou stock-dove, whose echo resounds thro' the glen,
6Ye wild whistling blackbirds in yon thorny den,
7Thou green-crested lapwing, thy screaming forbear,
8I charge you disturb not my slumbering fair.
9How lofty, sweet Afton, thy neighbouring hills,
10Far mark'd with the courses of clear winding rills;
11There daily I wander as noon rises high,
12My flocks and my Mary's sweet cot in my eye.
13How pleasant thy banks and green valleys below,
14Where wild in the woodlands the primroses blow;
15There oft, as mild Ev'ning sweeps over the lea,
17Thy crystal stream, Afton, how lovely it glides,
18And winds by the cot where my Mary resides,
19How wanton thy waters her snowy feet lave,
20As gathering sweet flowrets she stems thy clear wave.
22Flow gently, sweet river, the theme of my lays;
23My Mary's asleep by thy murmuring stream,
24Flow gently, sweet Afton, disturb not her dream.


1] Afton: a small river that flows into the Nith near New Cumnock. Back to Line
16] birk: birch. Back to Line
21] brae: hill. Back to Line
Publication Start Year: 
RPO poem Editors: 
G. G. Falle
RPO Edition: 
3RP 2.318.