Scarborough Fair / Canticle (1)

 

 parsley                                         

                                           Scarborough Fair / Canticle    (Simon & Garfunkel)

 

Are you going to Scarborough Fair:
Parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme.
Remember me to one who lives there.
She once was a true love of mine.

                                               On the side of a hill in the deep forest green.
                                                  Tracing of sparrow on snow-crested brown.
                                                  Blankets and bedclothes the child of the mountain
                                                  Sleeps unaware of the clarion call.

Tell her to make me a cambric shirt:
Parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme;
Without no seams nor needle work,
Then she’ll be a true love of mine.


   

                                                      On the side of a hill in the sprinkling of leaves.
                                                         Washes the grave with silvery tears.
                                                         A soldier cleans and polishes a gun.
                                                        Sleeps unaware of the clarion call.

 

Tell her to find me an acre of land:
Parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme;
Between the salt water and the sea sands,
Then she’ll be a true love of mine.

War bellows blazing in scarlet battalions.
                                                                 Generals order their soldiers to kill.
                                                                And to fight for a cause they have long ago forgotten.

Tell her to reap it with a sickle of leather:
Parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme;
And gather it all in a bunch of heather,
Then she’ll be a true love of mine.

Are you going to Scarborough Fair:
Parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme.
Remember me to one who lives there.
She once was a true love of mine.



 

                                                     

This is the mingling of two songs ” Scarborough Fair” and “Canticle” sung simultaneously.  The first and last verses are from “Scarborough Fair,” but the other lines alternate lines from “Canticle“.  This is a reworking of the lyrics from Simon’s 1963 anti-war song, “The Side of a Hill“, interspersed with the rest, a medieval English ballad that Simon & Garfunkel arranged masterfully.

The senseless image of war is woven into the simple words of the traditional ballad, which refers to a peaceful and balanced world, almost a goal, even though subject to the pains of love.

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