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(learned from Bob Coltman in 1961)

(music to go here)

It was a comely young maiden fair
Went walking out to take the air
She met a sailor on-n-n her way,
So I paid attention, so I paid attention
    To hear what they did say.

Fair maid, says he, why do you walk alone?
The night is soon, and the day is far gone.
She drew her revolver and then she did cry,
For my dark-eyed sailor, for my dark-eyed sailor,
    though he may live or die.

His coal-black eyes and his curly hair,
His flattering tongue my heart did ensnare,
Genteel was he, no rake like you,
To advise a maiden, to advise a maiden
    to shun the jackets of blue.

'Tis six long years since he left me home,
A golden ring he took and gently broke,
He gave this token, here, half you see,
And the other he's keeping, and the other he's keeping
    to remind him of me.

Said William, Drive him from off your mind.
Many a good sailor like him you'll find,
For love turned aside, it cold doth grow,
Like a winter's morning, like a winter's morning
    all covered with snow.

My every hope is placed on him,
True love will wait, true love will win.
Said she, while tears from her eyes did fall,
'Tis my dark-eyed sailor, 'tis my dark-eyed sailor
    approving my downfall.

When William did the ring unfold,
She was so struck with joy and woe,
You're welcome, William, here's land and gold,
You're my dark-eyed sailor, you're my dark-eyed sailor,
    so manly true and bold.

Come ladies now, where'er you be,
A warning now take from me,
Always be true while your love's away,
For a cloudy morning, for a cloudy morning
    oft brings a pleasant day.

(from miriam berg's folksong collection)