(learned orally from my brother Herm Fitz in about 1963
who learned it from Barry Olivier)
Tomorrow morn I'll be sixteen and Billy Grimes the rover
Has popped the question to me, ma, he wants me for his lover.
Tomorrow morn, he says, mama, he's comin' bright and early,
To take a pleasant walk with me across the fields of barley.
You cannot go, my daughter dear, there is no use a-talking;
You cannot go with Billy Grimes across the fields a-walking.
To think of his presumption, that dirty ugly rover;
I wonder where your pride has gone to think of such a lover.
Old Grimes is dead, you know, mama, and Billy is so lonely.
That is to say, since Grimes is dead, that Billy is the only.
And he'll come heir to all that's left, and that they say is nearly
A good ten thousand dollars worth and about six hundred yearly.
I did not hear, my daughter dear, your last remarks quite clearly,
But Billy is a clever lad and I'm sure he loves you dearly.
So get you up tomorrow morn, oh get up bright and early,
To take a pleasant walk with him across the fields of barley.
(from miriam berg's folksong collection)