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Little Mathie Grove

This song is by Ralph Stanley and appears on the album Ralph Stanley (2002).

On a high, on a high, on a high holiday,
On the very best day in the year.
Little Matty Grove to the church did go,
The Holy word to hear.

And some come in all dressed in white,
And some in purple and blue,
And then come in Lord Arnold's wife
The flower among the few.

She looked him, he looked at her,
The like had never been done
Till she got up and took his hand
And bade him come alone.

Well they tossed and they turned in the bed all night
Till they lay fast asleep.
When they woke up in the new morn dawn,
Lord Arnold stood at their feet.

He said "Get up, little Mathie Grove,
And put your clothing on.
For it'll never be known in old England
I slayed a naked man."

"I shan't get up, I won't get dressed,
I fear so for my life!
For you have got two very short swords,
And me not nary a knife."

"Well yes I've got two very short swords;
They cost me deep in the purse,
And you shall have the better of the two
And I shall take the worse."

"And you may strike the very first blow,
And strike it like a man.
And I shall strike the very next one,
And kill you if I can."

Well Mathie struck the very first blow,
It hurt Lord Arnold sore.
And Arnold struck the very next one,
Left Mathie layin' dead in his gore.

He turned his eyes to his wife in her bed,
The rage and the hate saw she.
"Who do you like best now?" he said,
Little Mathie Grove or me?"

Very well do I like your brow," said she,
"Very well do I like your chin,
But I like Mathie Grove in all of his gore,
Better than you and all your kin.

Well, he took her by the hair of her head
He led her through the hall,
And with his sword cut off her head,
And kicked it against the wall.

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