Dying Nun, Lyric Variant 02


“Dying Nun, Lyric Variant 02,” Appalachian State University Libraries Digital Collections, accessed June 28, 2022, https://omeka.library.appstate.edu/items/show/31488.

Social Bookmarking


Allowed tags: <p>, <a>, <em>, <strong>, <ul>, <ol>, <li>


Dying Nun, Lyric Variant 02


One leaf typewritten on the front side. The document is in excellent physical condition. The document was laminated. The upper left corner and the lower left corner were folded into the laminate. The document is a carbon duplicate.


Ballads, Last words -- Songs and music Nuns -- Songs and music Death -- Songs and music


W. L. Eury Appalachian Collection, Appalachian State University

Date Created



I. G. Greer


The images and audio files contained in the "So Mote It Ever Be: The Folksong Heritage of North Carolina's Northern Blue Ridge Mountains" collection are available for free personal, non-commercial, and educational use, provided that proper citation is used (e.g. I. G. Greer/W. Amos Abrams Manuscript Files Series, Folksong Files Subseries. W. L. Eury Appalachian Collection. Special Collections. Appalachian State University, Boone, NC). Any commercial use of the materials without the written permission of Appalachian State University is strictly prohibited. Please contact the Appalachian State University W. L. Eury Appalachian Collection with specific questions or with requests for further information.








The Dying Nun

Let the air blow in upon me,
Let me see the midnight sky,
Stand back sisters from around me,
Oh, it is so hard to die.
Raise the pillow up, Oh, Martha,
Sister Martha, you are kind,
Come and stand alone beside me,
E're I leave you all behind.

Oh, my Father and my Mother,
Can you not forget the past?
When you hear some stranger telling,
How your stray lamb died at last,
But of all that used to love me,
Who will weep when I am dead?
None but you, dear Sister Martha,
Keep there watch around my bed.

Oh, The Heavenly strains come stealing,
Through the midnight drear and dim,
And I hear the chime bells pealing,
As I float away with him,
I am coming Douglas, Douglas
Where you are I too come there,
Yes I come at last my dearest,
Death gives back your little Clara.

Here is my hand, now cold and frozen,
Once it was so soft and white,
And this ring that drops down from it,
Clasped my finger once so tight,
Little ring they thought so worthless,
That they let me keep it there,
'Twas but one plain golden circlet,
with a braid of Douglas hair.

Sister Martha, are you near me?
You are kinder than the rest.
Raise my head and let me lay it
While I live upon your breast,
I was thinking of some music,
That I heard long, long ago,
Oh, how sweet the nuns are singing,
I n the Chapel soft and low.

Sister Martha, Sister Martha,
Has the moon gone down so soon?
And this cell seems cold as winter,
Though I know it is June.
Sisters in their white beds lying,
Dreaming in the soft moonlight,
To their dreams comes no message,
Clara dies alone tonight.

Classification Title

Dying Nun, Lyric Variant 02

Document Title

The Dying Nun

Scholarly Classification

Brown, Additional Ballads - 317 Randolph, 706

Dimensions - Original

217 mm x 357 mm

Upload Date


File name


Transcription Date


Transcribed By

Paul L. Robertson

Social Bookmarking


Allowed tags: <p>, <a>, <em>, <strong>, <ul>, <ol>, <li>