Missouri State University
Max Hunter Folk Song Collection

House Carpenter

Cat. #0198 (MFH #246) - As sung by Mrs. Allie Long Parker, Eureka Springs, Arkansas on September 2, 1958

VERSE 1
We met, we met, my own true love
We met, we met, cried he
I've jest returned from th salt, salt sea
And it's all for th love of thee

VERSE 2
I could have married a kings daughter
I'm sure she'd a married me
But strings of gold I did'nt refuse
And it's all for th love of thee

VERSE 3
If you could'a married a kings daughter
I'm sure you are to blame
For I'm married to a house carpenter
And I'm sure he's a nice young man

VERSE 4
Won't you forsake your house carpenter
And go along with me
I'll take you to where th grass grows green
On th banks of th sweet lily

VERSE 5
If I forsake my house carpenter
And go along with you
What have you there to montain me upon
And to keep me from slavery

VERSE 6
O, don't you see them seven ships
A sailing for dry land
There's a hundred and ten of th finest waiting men
And they'll all be at your command

VERSE 7
She pick-ed up her precious little babe
An' kisses gave it three
Saying, stay here, stay here, my precious little babe
Keep your papa company

VERSE 8
They had not been at sea two weeks
I'm sure it was not three
Till this fair damsel began to weep
And she wept most bitterly

VERSE 9
What are you weeping for my gold
Or is it for my store
Or is it for your house carpenter
That you left on old England shore

VERSE 10
I'm neither weeping for your gold
Nor is it for your store
I'm weeping for my precious little babe
That I never shall see any more

VERSE 11
They had not been on sea three weeks
I'm sure it was not four
Till under th decks there sprang a leak
And she sank to rise no more

VERSE 12
O curse, O curse, all seamen, cried she
O curse, them unto me
They have robbed me of my house carpenter
And now they are drownding me

VERSE 13
O, don't you see that turtle dove
A flying from vine to vine
He's mourning for his own true love
Jest like I mourn for mine

Variants