Favorite Songs: “Linden Lea”

I have a lot of hobbies and pursuits of passion, but probably the deepest and longest of those is what today is called classical music.

In my years playing classical music, by far my favorite type of playing is to accompany soloists, whether vocal or instrumental. You get to be part of the music, and you have the best seat in the house.

This song is a relatively simple one, but the lyrics are beautiful. This performance, by Natalie Merchant of “10,000 Maniacs” fame, I found to be particularly endearing.

“Linden Lea”

words: William Barnes
tune: Ralph Vaughn Williams


Within the woodlands, flow’ry gladed,
By the oak tree’s mossy root,
The shining grass blades, timber shaded
Now do quiver under foot –
The birds do whistle overhead,
The water’s bubbling in its bed,
And there for me the apple tree
Do lean down, low in Linden Lea.

The leaves that lately were a-springin’
Now do fade within the copse,
The painted birds do hush their singin’
Up above the timber tops,
The brown leaved fruits are turning red,
In cloudless sunshine overhead,
With root for me the apple tree
Do lean down, low in Linden Lea.

Let other folk make money faster
In the air of dark roomed towns.
I don’t dread a peevish master,
Though no man may heed my frowns –
(For) I be free to go abroad,
Or take again my homeward road —
To where, for me, the apple tree
Do lean down, low in Linden Lea.

Author: Sibelius Russell

Sibelius Russell (a/k/a/ Owen "Beleaguered" Servant) lives a life of whimsical servitude -- whatever that means.

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