Mattie's Dream

This is based on an old Scottish folktale called Cousin Mattie.
Are you ever troubled with dreams, wee Sandy?
Do many visions plague your sleep?
I dreamed a dream of you, wee laddie,
I dreamed a dream profound and deep.

A lady came to me from summer,
She held a rose within each hand,
She asked that I should choose a flower,
I chose the pale one by demand.

She urged that I should keep forever,
The rose I chose, ne'er to part,
But whilst I thought I was being clever,
I gave the rose to you, sweetheart.

The lady then returned to scold,
The foolishness of what I'd done,
For in giving you the rose to hold,
I gave away my life to mourn.

She said that ne'er a fortnight passed,
That you would be the death of me,
And with the pale rose held against my chest,
That they'd take me to the cemetery.

I know you'd ne'er kill me, my lad,
For your o'er wee to harm a soul,
So I'll ne'er fear the dream I had,
Nor shall I soon leave this world.

With time the years did pass my lad,
Till the lady did return to me,
This time the lady was my aunt,
The mother, oh so dear to thee.

And your dear mother did weep for me,
She bade that I should flee this place,
That I should fear my bonny Sandy,
Lest he kill me in seven days.

I dare that I should take my leave,
And leave behind my palest rose,
To distance myself away from thee...
Like you did seven years ago.

And seven years to the day,
Fourteen years from the first dream,
A coffin, deep and heavy, lay,
Engraved with only Mattie's name.

And what of you, my bonny Sandy?
What has become of the palest rose?
A hush descends upon the valley,
A secret left among the ghosts.

Twenty-one summers gone,
A bonny rose cut off in bloom,
To lay beside the palest one,
The one our bonny Flora knew!
Published: 2/9/2012
Bouquets and Brickbats