Play recording: Spinning Wheel, The
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- Teideal (Title): Spinning Wheel, The.
- Uimhir Chatalóige Ollscoil Washington (University of Washington Catalogue Number): 844003.
- Uimhir Chnuasach Bhéaloideas Éireann (National Folklore of Ireland Number): none.
- Uimhir Roud (Roud Number): 17645.
- Uimhir Laws (Laws Number): none.
- Uimhir Child (Child Number): none.
- Cnuasach (Collection): Joe Heaney Collection, University of Washington, Seattle.
- Teanga na Croímhíre (Core-Item Language): English.
- Catagóir (Category): song.
- Ainm an té a thug (Name of Informant): Joe Heaney.
- Ainm an té a thóg (Name of Collector): Susan Auerbach.
- Dáta an taifeadta (Recording Date): 1982.
- Suíomh an taifeadta (Recording Location): University of Washington, United States of America.
- Ocáid an taifeadta (Recording Occasion): private.
- Daoine eile a bhí i láthair (Others present): unavailable.
- Stádas chóipcheart an taifeadta (Recording copyright status): unavailable.
Mellow the moonlight to shine is beginning
Close by the window young Eileen is spinning
Bent o’er the fire her blind grandmother sitting
Is crooning and moaning and drowsily knitting.
Merrily cheerily noiselessly whirring
Swings the wheel, spins the wheel while the foot’s stirring
Sprightly and lightly and airily ringing
Sounds the sweet voice of the young maiden singing.
‘Eileen, a chara, I hear someone tapping’
‘Tis the ivy dear mother against the glass flapping’
‘Eileen, I surely hear somebody sighing’
‘Tis the sound mother dear of the autumn winds dying.’
‘What’s the noise I hear at the window I wonder?’
‘Tis the little birds chirping, the holly-bush under’
‘What makes you be shoving and moving your stool on
And singing all wrong the old song of the ‘Coolin’?’
There’s a form at the casement, the form of her true love
And he whispers with face bent, ‘I’m waiting for you love
Get up from the stool, through the lattice step lightly
And we’ll rove in the grove while the moon’s shining brightly.’
The maid shakes her head, on her lips lays her fingers
Steps up from the stool, longs to go and yet lingers
A frightened glance turns to her drowsy grandmother
Puts her foot on the stool, spins the wheel with the other
Lazily, easily, now swings the wheel round
Slowly and lowly is heard now the reel’s round
Noiseless and light to the lattice above her
The maid steps, then leaps to the arms of her lover.
Slower and slower and slower the wheel swings
Lower and lower and lower the reel rings
Ere the reel and the wheel stop their ringing and moving
Through the grove the young lovers by moonlight are roving.
This song became well-known from a recording made in the 1940s by Mayo singer Delia Murphy.