Friday, October 31, 2008

Happy Halloween!

Just to go a little nerdly for the moment, Halloween is also the setting for the Scottish ballad 'Tam Lin,' in which Janet hooks up with Tam Lin (who was stolen by the fairies as a child). Because Janet's knocked up now, she has to save Tam Lin from being dragged into hell. Pretty effin' cool.

"The Queen of Fairies keppit me
In yon green hill to dwell,
And I'm a fairv, lyth and limb,
Fair ladye, view me well.

Then would I never tire, Janet,
In Elfish land to dwell,
But aye, at every seven years,
They pay the teind to hell;
And I am sae fat and fair of flesh,
I fear 't will be mysell.

This night is Halloween, Janet,
The morn is Hallowday,
And gin ye dare your true love win,
Ye hae nae time to stay.

The night it is good Halloween,
When fairy folk will ride,
And they that wad their true-love win,
Miles Cross they maun bide.'"

From a website devoted to Tam Lin, with all sorts of translations. This one's from Ministrelsy of the Scottish Border by Sir Walter Scott.