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Short Jacket (Cabin Boy) Oh once I had a sweetheart Young Jimmy was his name, And it's for the sake of Jimmy That I crossed o'er the main. And if I never do find him I will mourn constantlie All for the sake of Jimmy A maid I will live and die. Short jacket and sailor's breeches This fair one she put on, And like a brave young sailor She boldly marched along. She bargained with a sea captain Her passage to be free, And she would be his true companion While crossing the raging sea. One night as they were talking A-going to their bed. The captain to her bravely said "I wish you was a maid. For your cherry cheeks and ruby lips Have so enchanted me, That I do wish with all my heart That you was a maid for me." "O hold your tongue, now, Captain Such talk is all in vain, And if the sailors hear you They will laugh and make you game. But wait until we reach the shore And two pretty maids we will find. For you and me to sport and play And with them drink our wine." It happened a few days after The gallant ship did land, And as she stepped off on the dock She waved her lily-white hand; Saying," Once I was a sailor on your ship But a maid I am on shore, Adieu, adieu now, Captain Adieu for evermore." "If you'll come back, my pretty maid And if you will marry me, I have a large fortune That I'll assign to thee. Ten thousand guineas in bright gold That I will assign to thee If you will come back, my pretty maid And say you will marry me." "No, for once I had a sweetheart Young Jimmy was his name, And it's for the sake of Jimmy That I crossed o'er the main. And if I never do find him I will mourn constantlie All for the sake of Jimmy A maid I will live and die." From Traditional American Folk Songs, Warner and Warner Collected from John Galusha, 1941 Note: A shorter version (slight variant of verses 2,3,4,5) was recorded by Killen, 50 South to 50 South; this version (tune SHRTJKT2) retains the baffled captain theme, but almost loses her motivation, reducing it to the last line of the first verse RG DT #444 Laws N12 RG
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