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|This song was first known as The Sick Young Lover. The song as it evolved may be a combination of two songs, one English and one Irish. A broadsheet containing both English and phoenetic Irish verses was printed by Haly in Cork circa 1830.*||
I wish I was in Carrigfergus
Only for nights in Ballygrant
I would swim over the deepest ocean
For my love to find
But the sea is wide and I cannot cross over
And neither have I the wings to fly
I wish I could meet a handsome boatsman
To ferry me over, to my love and die
My childhood days bring back sad reflections
Of happy times I spent so long ago
My boyhood friends and my own relations
Have all passed on now like melting snow.
But I'll spend my days in endless roaming
Soft is the grass, my bed is free.
Ah, to be back now in Carrigfergus
On that long road down to the sea.
But in Kilkenny, it is reported
On marble stones there as black as ink
With gold and silver I would support her
But I'll sing no more 'till I get a drink.
For I'm drunk today, and I'm seldom sober
A handsome rover from town to town
Ah, but I'm sick now, my days are numbered
Come all you young men and lay me down.
|*This information is from The Mudcat Cafe.|