I Am Stretched On Your Grave lyrics

by Kate Rusby

I am stretched on your grave
And I'll lie here forever
If your hands were in mine
I'd be sure they would not sever
My apple tree, my brightness,
It's time we were together
For I smell of the Earth
And I'm worn by the weather.

When my family think
That I'm safely in my bed
Oh from morn 'til night
I am stretched out at your head
Calling out onto the earth
With tears hot and wild
For the loss of a girl
That I loved as a child.

Do you remember the night
Oh the night when we were lost
In the shade of the blackthorn
And the touch of the frost?
Oh, and thanks be to Jesus
We did all that was right
And your maidenhead still
Is your pillar of light.

[Instrumental]

Oh, the priests and the friars
They approach me in dread
Oh for I love you still
Oh my wife, and you're dead
I still will be your shelter
Through rain and through storm
And with you in your cold grave
I cannot sleep warm

So I am stretched on your grave
And I'll lie here forever
If your hands were in mine
I'd be sure they would not sever
My apple tree, my brightness,
It's time we were together
For I smell of the Earth
And I'm worn by the weather.

Song Details

Lyrics: Anonymous 17th-century Irish poem titled "Táim sínte ar do thuama". It was translated to English several times, the most notable version by Frank O'Connor - a short story writer and memoirist of over 150 works.

Music: The poem was put to music in 1979 by Philip King, an Irish musician, film maker and broadcaster. He is also the founding member of the Irish folk-rock band, Scullion.

Brief: A powerful poem of love. A man has lost his most treasured love and cannot bare life without her. He met her as a child and loved her ever since then. Every day from morning till night he lies on her grave, desperate to be with her once again. There are some very emotional phrases in this song... "with you in your cold grave, I cannot sleep warm."

References:
blackthorn - thorny rose-like shrub, with black twigs, white flowers, and small sour plumlike fruits - also called sloe.
maidenhead - virginity; maidenhood

Category: Love Song

Kate Rusby: Born Kate Rusby in Penistone, Barnsley, England on Dec 4, 1973. Performing since 1992, she is singer-songwriter, vocalist, guitarist and one of the most noted modern-day folk singers. The song is featured on her album, Hourglass (pictured) which was recorded at Temple Record Studio, Midlothian, Scotland and released on March 1, 1997.

Other Recording Artists: Scullion, Sinéad O'Connor, The Voice Squad, Runa, Iarla Ó Lionáird, Eithne Ní Uallacháin...

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