PR Website

James Harris, (The Daemon Lover)

No: 243; variant: 243B

  1. ‘WELL met, well met, my own true love, Long time I have been seeking thee; I am lately come from the salt sea, And all for the sake, love, of thee.
  2. ‘I might have had a king’s daughter, And fain she would have married me; But I’ve forsaken all her crowns of gold, And all for the sake, love, of thee.’
  3. ‘If you might have had a king’s daughter, I think you much to blame; I would not for five hundred pounds That my husband should hear the same.
  4. ‘For my husband is a carpenter, And a young ship-carpenter is he, And by him I have a little son, Or else, love, I’d go along with thee.
  5. ‘But if I should leave my husband dear, Likewise my little son also, What have you to maintain me withal, If I along with you should go?’
  6. ‘I have seven ships upon the seas, And one of them brought me to land, And seventeen mariners to wait on thee, For to be, love, at your command.
  7. ‘A pair of slippers thou shalt have, They shall be mad of beaten gold, Nay and be lin’d with velvet soft, For to keep thy feet from cold.
  8. ‘A gilded boat thou then shall have, The oars shall gilded be also, And mariners to row the[e] along, For to keep thee from thy overthrow.’
  9. They had not been long upon the sea Before that she began to weep: ‘What, weep you for my gold?’ he said, ‘Or do you weep for my fee?
  10. ‘Or do you weep for some other young man That you love much better than me?’ ‘No, I do weep for my little son, That should have come along with me.’
  11. She had not been upon the seas Passing days three or four But the mariner and she were drowned, And never were heard of more.
  12. When tidings to old England came The ship-carpenter’s wife was drownd, He wrung his hands and tore his hair, And grievously fell in a swoon.
  13. ‘Oh cursed be those mariners! For they do lead a wicked life; They ruind me, a ship-carpenter, Be deluding away my wife.’