Janet jo

Dramatis Personae: A Father, Mother, Janet and her Lover.

Janet lies on her back behind the scenes. The father and mother stand up to receive the visits of the lover, who comes forward singing, to an air somewhat like the Merry Masons:

I'm come to court Janet jo,
   Janet jo, Janet jo;
I'm come to court Janet jo -
   How's she the day?

Mother and Father:

She's up the stair washin',
   Washin, washin';
She's up the stair washin',
   Ye canna see her the day.

The lover retires, and again advances with the same announcement of his object and purposes, to which he receives similar evasive answers from Janet's parents, who successively represent her as bleaching, drying, and ironing clothes. At last they say:

Janet jo's dead and gane,
   Dead and gane, dead and gane;
Janet jo's dead and gane,
   She'll never come hame!

She is then carried off to be buried, the lover and the rest weeping. She sometimes revives (to their great joy) and sometimes not, ad libitum - that is, as Janet herself chooses.

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Copyright © 2001, Jack Campin