I often wonder how many folk songs begin with the line ‘As I walked out one May morning’. Never an April or a June morning; always May (unless ‘midsummer’ or ‘spring’). Perhaps it is just for the sake of the alliteration.
This is called ‘Folk Song‘, or possibly ‘Folke-stone Song‘
As I walked down Old High Street
One evening in July
I watched the art shops closing
And I heard the seabirds cry.
In the fountains at the harbour
A few last children played;
Their mothers told them “Home-time:
Come on! There’ll be other days.”
So the day came to its ending
And the evening began;
Couples sat down in restaurants
But I wandered with no plan.
Usually in the kind of song
That begins As I Walked Out
I come across a weeping maid
Lamenting for some lout;
For a lover who has betrayed her
Or has died in a foreign war
Or else has gone for a sailor
Left her standing on the shore.
She has found that she is with child
A child that can never be
So she comes to Folkestone Harbour
To drown herself in the sea.
There was no sign of such a maid
That evening in July
So I shed a few tears of my own
As the seagulls cried.