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Arise, arise, you slumbering sleeper
Arise, arise, 'tis almost day
Go open your doors, your doors and windows
And hear what your true love doth say

Oh who is this that knocks at my window
That speaks my name so familiarly?
'Tis James, 'tis James, your own true lover
That wants to speak one word to thee

Go away from my window, you'll waken my father
He's lying now a-taking his rest
And in his hand he holds a weapon
To kill the one that my heart loves best

Go away from my window, you'll waken my mother
Such tales of love she scorns to hear
You?d better go court, go court some other
She kindly whispered in my ear

I won't go court, go court some other
By what I say I mean no harm
I want to win you from your mother
A rest you in a true love's arms

O down in yon valley there grows a green willow
I wish it were across my breast
It might cut off all grief and sorrow
And set my troubled mind at rest

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Source: Eighty English Folk Songs from the Southern Appalachians, ed. Maud Karpeles. (1968)

Sung by Mr Alex S. Coffey at White Rock, Virginia.

The text is as sung by Mr Napoleon Fitzgerald at Beechgrove, Virginia to an almost identical tune.

This is a widespread song group with distinct narrative strands, ranging from a straightforward night-visiting song with an unsuccessful outcome to a full-blown tragedy in which one or more of the principals dies.
Several sets were published as Arise Arise; mostly by Sharp. Drowsy Sleeper is a more common title, but there are many others, including Who is at My Window Weeping, Awake Awake and I Will Set My Ship in Order

There are four versions at the Max Hunter Collection:

Drowsy Sleeper Sung by Mrs. Oliva Hauser, Fayettville, Arkansas on June 21, 1958

Drowsy Sleeper Sung by Wise Jones, Fayetteville, Arkansas on March 25, 1958

Wake Up, Wake Up, You Drowsy Sleeper Sung by Olivia Hauser, Fayetteville, Arkansas on July 5, 1960

Drowsy Sleeper Sung by Ollie Gilbert, Mountain View, Arkansas on June 25, 1969

The Traditional Ballad Index entry can be found here

Roud: 402 (Search Roud index at VWML) Take Six
Laws: M4

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