The Axe Song

Lady, come not to our dancing!
Woman's flesh is not for cleaving,
And some will die now in our reaving,
Under the moon this midsummer's evening.

O axe, in battle I have borne thee.
Harm not my brother, but if you see
That none of his blows disfigures me
I'll grace thy haft with filigree.

Blood, spurt not from me to the hill.
Fools would dance who had no skill
To save their lives, nor battle-will.
Now their flesh lies cold and still.

Brother, let us fall to dancing!
And pray the blows we take are glancing.
We do no courtiers' worthless prancing
Under the moon this midsummer's evening.

—Riverside, California
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