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Maggie Matthias    (lyrics by Meg Browning)

Look I made a castle out of sand and stone
the sun was on the harbour and I was all alone
The sea beyond the sandbar came running to my ground
It washed the grains from under and pulled at it till it was drowned

Once I had a mother, brothers and sisters too
Dad he worked the coal pit, like many daddies do
But Mam she died with Mary who now is nine years old
Another poor relation whose future has been sold
Here's an end to education; goodbye to the pot of gold
for every poor relation must learn to do just as they're told

Quebec County Durham is where I was born
Alice my sister had reached only twelve -
"Too many young girls!" my Daddy said "back to Wales you must go".
Durham to Wrexham is a long, long way.
Sister Alice said not to dread this day;
that she would write from Birkenhead when the mistress allowed

The mouth of Aunty Glenys; the biggest I ever saw
Opens wide with menace like the parish oven door.
"For the food that's on the table and shelter from the dark -
like the horse that's in the stable you will will have to work.
Bring the milk from the roadside and take it into town.
Pour it out for housewives, and be careful you don't let me down".

I can dream as the cart rolls on
and the mare plods and shakes dust from her head
and the churns clank - and the farmers swear, as the day drags on.
The mare stamps impatient, the churns rock to and fro
her ears are back with anger for she doesn't want to go -
some sort of devil lives that way

And life elswhere looks pleasing - boats are there to sail
Books just wait for reading and each one has its tale
Look I made a castle out of sand and stone
the sun was on the harbour and I was all alone
The sea beyond the sandbar came running to my ground
It washed the grains from under and pulled at it till it was drowned


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