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This ballad is also known as James Harris, or the Daemon Lover. It is Child Ballad #243. These lyrics were found in Canada.
For a complete list of Child Ballads at this site go to Francis J. Child Ballads.
'Well met, well met, my own true love
And very well met,' said he.
'I have just returned from the salt, salt sea,
And it's all for the sake of thee. '
'I could have married a queen's daughter,
And she would have married me,
But I refused a crown of gold,
And it's all for the sake of thee.'
'If you could have married a queen's daughter,
Then she should have married thee,
For me, young man, you have came too late,
For I've married a house carpenter.'
'If you will leave your house carpenter
And go along with me,
I will take you down where the grass grows green
On the banks of the River Dee.'
'If I were to leave my house carpenter
And go along with thee,
What have you got to maintain a wife
Or to keep her from slavery ?'
'I have seven ships at sea
And seven more in port,
And a hundred and twenty-four jolly, jolly boys,
And they all will wait on thee.'
She called then her two pretty babes
And she kissed them most tenderly,
Saying, 'Stay at home, my two pretty babes'
And bear your own father company.'
She had not sailed on sea two weeks,
I'm sure not sailed on three,
Till here she sat in her new husband's cabin,
Weeping most bitterly.
'Oh, do you weep for gold ?' he said,
'Or do you weep for fear?
Or do you weep for your house carpenter
That you left when you came here ?'
'I do not weep for gold,' she said,
'Nor do I weep for fear,
But I do weep for my two pretty babes
That I left when I came here.'
She had not sailed on sea three weeks,
I'm sure not sailed on four,
Till overboard her fair body she threw
And her weeping was heard no more.
Her curse did attend a sea sailor's life,
Her curse did attend a sailor's life,
For the robbing of a house carpenter,
And stealing away his wife.
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|Lyrics from Digital Tradition Mudcat Discussion Cafe Discussion Group|