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Russian Village Folk Song

A folk song sung for generations by the women in villages in rural Russian. Their husbands and lovers were forcibly sent to war by the Czars, and many never returned. This exploitation of the Russian people by the Czars went on for generations.

Girls of the village, come gather round.
For you are my dearest friends.

Show me always your loving kindness.
Gather me in with you.

You will go to a verdant garden, will you not take me?
You are going to pick the flowers there. As a flower, pick me.

Fine garlands you will weave.
Will you not weave me in?

And as you walk to the River Danube,
Take me along with you.

Into the river your garlands you will cast.
Onto the water cast me as well.

The garlands that you wove, did float on the waves.
But down to the depths sank mine.

Your lovers returned from the war.
But my love never returned.
He has never come home.
Nor has he sent word.
Can it be he has forgotten me?

The Czars were declared divine by the Russian Orthodox church.The Czars parceled out all Russian land to feudal landowners who had the power of life and death over the serfs on their land. Killing a wild animal to eat when your family was starving could get you hung. There was a reason the Russians revolted against the Czar and the landowners.

(Webmaster's comment: The folk song above was sung by Elena Sapogova for the Russian movie "The Soloist." It is the most heartbreaking song I have ever heard. I am trying to get its title and a copy of it on CD.)

Russian Village Folk Song