DESCRIPTION: "The lang woods o' Derry are ill to gae through." "My heart's in the Highlands wherever I go." He thinks of the valiant in Portmore: "O bonny Portmore, ye shine where you charm ... When I look from you, my heart it is sore."
AUTHOR: Donald Cameron (source: Buchan)
EARLIEST DATE: 1828 (Buchan)
KEYWORDS: homesickness Ireland Scotland nonballad
FOUND IN: Britain(Scotland)
REFERENCES (4 citations):
Greig #32, p. 2, "Portmore" or "My Heart's in the Highlands" (1 text)
ADDITIONAL: Peter Buchan, Ancient Ballads and Songs of the North of Scotland (Edinburgh, 1875 (reprint of 1828 edition)), Vol II, pp. 150-151, 313, "Portmore"
The Illustrated Book of Scottish Songs from the Sixteenth to the Nineteenth Century, (London, 1854 ("Digitized by Google")), p. 297, "Portmore" [this is an acknowledged reprint, with some punctuation differences, of Buchan's text and note]
W. Christie, editor, Traditional Ballad Airs (Edinburgh, 1881 (downloadable pdf by University of Edinburgh, 2007)), Vol II, pp. 180-181, "Portmore" or "My Heart's in the Hielans"
cf. "Strong Walls of Derry" (tune, per Christie)
cf. "Bonny Portmore" (derivative texts) and references there
NOTES: Buchan: "It is well known to most poetical readers with how little success Burns endeavoured to graft upon this stock a twig of his own rearing ["My Heart's in the Highlands"].... The whole is now, for the first time, given complete from the recitation of a very old person."
See W. Christie, editor, Traditional Ballad Airs (Edinburgh, 1876 (downloadable pdf by University of Edinburgh, 2007)), Vol I, pp. 262-263, "Bell Gordon of Portmore," in which the singer leaves Bell Gordon, with no word about the Highlands. It includes the lines "Oh, bonny Portmore, ye delight me wi' charms! The more I look to you the more my heart warms! But when I look from you, my heart it is sore, To part wi' Bell Gordon and bonny Portmore." Christie says this was long sung in Buchan and is his mother's text augmented by two other "copies." - BS
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