“One Man Shall Mow My Meadow”


Singer states that various numbers of men shall mow her meadow and gather it together, as well as shear her sheep. The song is cumulative, hypnotic, and loaded with symbolism.


It's hard to decide whether there's a ritual element here, or whether the song itself is the ritual. -PJS

And here I thought it was just a dirty song covered with pastoral symbols.... - RBW

Cross references


  1. Sharp-100E 100, "One Man Shall Mow My Meadow" (1 text, 1 tune)
  2. Kennedy 291, "The Counting Song" (1 text, 1 tune)
  3. Creighton-NovaScotia 90, "Me One Man" (1 text, 1 tune)
  5. ADDITIONAL: Walter de la Mare, _Come Hither_, revised edition, 1928, notes to #218, ("One man shall mow my meadow") (1 text)
  6. ADDITIONAL: Maud Karpeles, _Folk Songs of Europe_, Oak, 1956, 1964, p. 50, "One Man Shall Mow My Meadow" (1 text, 1 tune)
  7. Roud #143
  8. BI, ShH100


Alternate titles: “Me One Man”; “Mowing Down the Meadow”; “One Man Shall Shear My Wethers”
Author: unknown
Earliest date: 1909
Keywords: cumulative nonballad
Found in: Britain(England(South)) Canada(Mar)