Annie first appeared in the 1871 volume Poems, published by William Alder of Blyth. It subsequently appeared in the collections of 1886, 1888 and 1892.

Black is her hair, and bonnie

And never a mortal could see

The coal-coloured tresses of Annie

And be as a mortal should be.

White is her forehead, and bonnie -

And when she goes down to the well

The beat of the footstep of Annie

The wrath of a tiger would quell.

Red are her cheeks, and bonnie

And when she is knitting the tone

And charm of the accents of Annie

Would ravish the heart of a stone.

Rare are her graces and many

But nothing whatever can be

Compared to the sweet glance of Annie -

The glance she has given to me.

The original poem starts: Coal black are the tresses of Fanny, but ........ I thought a lot about this and eventually opted for an opening line that matched those of the following two verses.

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