The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #125922   Message #2792901
Posted By: The Borchester Echo
20-Dec-09 - 01:30 PM
Thread Name: pretty polly - Cruel Ship's Carpenter?
Subject: RE: pretty polly
Ghostly visitation, Dick? I'll say.
Here are two Cruel Ship's Carpenters from my archive, one from Worcester and the other from Plymouth:


In fair Worcester town and in fair Worcestershire
A beautiful damsel she once lived there.
A young man he courted her all for to be his dear,
And he by his trade was a ship's carpenter.
Early one morning before it was day,
He went to his Polly, these words he did say:
'O Polly, O Polly, you must go with me,
Before we are married my friends for to see.'
He led her through woods and through valleys so deep,
Which caused this poor maiden to sigh and to weep:
'O Billy, O Billy, you have led me astray
On purpose my innocent life to betray.
'O Billy, O' Billy, Oh pardon my life,
I never will covet for to be your wife;
I'll travel the whole world to set myself free,
If you will pardon my baby and me.'
'There's no time for pardon, there's no time to save,
For all the night long I've been digging your grave.
Your grave is now open and the spade is standing by';
Which caused this young damsel to weep and to cry.
He covered her up so safe and secure,
Thinking no one could find her, he was sure.
Then he went on board to sail the world round,
Before the murder could ever be found.
Early one morning before it was day,
The captain he came up and these words he did say:
'There's a murderer on board and he must be known.
Our ship is in mourning, we cannot sail on.'
Then up steps the first man, 'I'm sure it's not me';
Then up steps the second, 'I'm sure it's not me';
Then up steps bold William to stamp and to swear:
'I'm sure it's not me sir. I vow and declare.'
Now as he was turning from captain with speed,
He meet with his Polly, which made his heart bleed.
She ripped him and tore him, she tore him in three,
Because that he murdered her baby and she.



The moon, it was shining on fair Plymouth town,
There lived a lovely damsel, her name was Miss Brown.
She courted handsome Willie, her darling for to be
His trade long and steady, a ship's carpenter was he.

It was early one morning before the break of day,
A voice came to the window and this to her did say,
Saying, "Rise up lovely Mary, and come away with me
Before we get married, some friends (pleasures) to see.

And he led her through the fields and the valleys oh so deep,
'Til at length lovely Mary began for to weep;
Saying,"Willie, handsome Willie, you've led me astray
Through the fields and the valleys, my life to betray."

"It's true what you say to me, it's just the truth you say
For late, late last night I was a-digging your grave,
Your grave that is open, and spade standing by
And down in the grave your fair body must lie."

And he stabbed her, he stabbed her, 'til the red blood did flow
And into the grave her fair body he did throw,
And he's buried her so neatly and he's covered her so sound
Not thinking this murder would ever be found.

It was early one morning before the break of day,
Over comes the Captain, and this to all did say,
"There's murder on shipboard has lately been done
Our good ship lies in mourning and cannot sail on.

Then up and spoke one sailor, "Indeed 'tis not I,"
Up and spoke another, "The same I do deny."
Then up spoke young Willie to damn, curse and swear
"Indeed, sir, not I, sir I'll vow and declare."

But as he was a-going and turning around,
He spied lovely Mary, she was dressed all in brown,
And she's snatched at him, and she's cut him, and she's tore him in three,
Saying "That's for the murder of my baby and me!"   (x 2)