John Reilly the fisherman, song

Jimmy Houten, singing in English
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As I roved out one evening down by the riverside
I spied a lovely fair maid her eyes were filled with tears
It was a dark and stormy night these words I heard her say
My true love’s on the raging seas bound for Americay

My love he is a clever man his age is scarce eighteen
He is one of the nicest young men that ever your eyes have seen
My parents being wealthy and Reilly he being poor
Because I loved my sailor boy they couldn’t me endure

One day my mother came to me and this to me did say
If you be fond of Reilly he must leave this country
If you be fond of Reilly he must leave this country
For your father swears he’ll have your life so shun his company

Oh mother dear don’t be severe where will I send my love
My very heart lies in his breast more constant as the dove
My daughter dear I’m not severe here is one hundred pound
Send Reilly to Americay and purchase there some ground

When she got the money to Reilly she did run
This very night to take your life my father’s charged a gun
Here is a hundred pounds in gold my mother sent to you
And sail you to Americay and I will follow you

It was early the next morning as Reilly sailed away
And as he put his foot on board these words to me did say
Here is a true-loves token and I’ll break it now in two
You can have my heart and half this ring till I find you

It was in three months after she was standing on the quay
When Reilly he came back again to take his love away
The ship was wrecked all hands were lost her father wept full sore
He got Reilly in his true-love’s arms lying drowned on the shore

And in her breast a letter he got and it was wrote with blood
Saying cruel was my father who tried to shoot my love
Let this now be a warning to all fair maids so gay
To never let the lad they love sail to Americay

see also   John Reilly the fisherman / Corney McDaid   John Reilly the fisherman / Cathal O'Neill