The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #16016   Message #1037175
Posted By: Q (Frank Staplin)
16-Oct-03 - 09:07 PM
Thread Name: Lyr Add: Tarpaulin Jacket
I am a young jolly brisk sailor,
Delights in all manner of sport,
When I'm in liquor I'm mellow,
The girls I then merrily court.
But love is surrounded with trouble,
And put such strange thoughts in my head,
Is it not a terrible story,
That love it should strike me stone dead.

Have not I been in stormy weather,
Have not I been in heat and in cold,
Have not I been with many a brave fellow
That has ventured his honour for gold.
But now the wars are all over,
And I am safe landed on shore,
The devil shall have me forever,
If ever I enter any more.

Some where is the girl that will love me,
And lay with me this very night,
Come jig it away with the fiddle,
A country dance or hornpipe.
Let the weakest not go with the strongest,
But let them be equally yok'd,
For the strongest will last out the longest,
The jacket ne'er values the stroke.

Here's health to my friends and acquaintances,
When death for me it doth come,
And let them behave in their station,
And send me a cask of good rum.
Let it be good royal stingo,
With three barrels of beer,
To make my friends the more welcome,
When they meet me at derry down fair.

Let there be six sailors to carry me,
Let them be damnable* drunk,
And as they are going to bury me,
Let them fall down with my trunk.
Let there be no sighing or sobbing,
But one single favour I crave,
Take me up in a tarpauling jacket,
And fiddle and dance to my grave.

A sailors' version of this grand old song complex that leads to "The Streets of Laredo", and one of the best of the whole lot. *damndable in the sheet.
Bodleian Ballads, Harding B 25(1883), c. 1819-1844, J. Pitts printer, London.