Rosie by Buz Collins I'm the man who tends the locks upon the Stourbridge Canal I work the flight at Wordsley, in the keeper's house I dwell Contented four and thirty years my salary for to earn Till the day that I saw Rosie from the bridge at Wordsley turn Now she had come from Banbury to work for Stourbridge glass And on her way to Dudley town my cottage she would pass I'd help her up the hillside with the morning sun above And by the time the sunset came and she returned I was in love But Rosie had a master who was cruel and severe He treated her so badly that her misery was clear As my love for her grew stronger so I knew what had to be I would take my Rosie from him and together we would flee It was many hours past midnight that I crept down to the dock The watchman he was sleeping so I quietly picked the lock Her master still out drinking there was Rosie all alone And it's gently I caressed her now I had her for my own I quietly released her ropes and pushed her from the side And towed her to the corner where the darkness did us hide I started up her engine and I pushed her into gear And for Tewkesbury we sailed away beneath the stars so clear Despite my joy and happiness I knew it could not last We reached the Severn early but the news had travelled fast The police were waiting for me as through Stourport we did sail And they took my Rosie from me and locked me in the jail So now I am an old man, I still work the Stourbridge flight And narrowboats still pass me in the day and in the night But Rosie she's gone back to carry coal to Banbury cross And she's left me here lamenting for the love that I have lost Buz Collins came from a family steeped in the folk tradition. He was the son of Dolly Collins, and nephew of Shirley, both central to the folk revival in the 1960s. Buz Collins was a talented songwriter and musician. Working with his wife Sam, living on their narrowboat "The Maid in England", the influences of the waterways and railways were obvious. With an eye for detail and a delightful sense of the comic, he tackled social history, romance and snobbery with equal vigour and passion. Tragically, Buz died, aged 30, in late summer 2002. Recorded on :
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