Death of William Gilley
My birth I received in this land,
My parents kind aid did afford
To bring me from childhood to youth
And teach me the fear of the Lord.
When nineteen long years had rolled round
In marriage I then did engage
With William, the man of my choice,
To spend all the rest of my days.
His beauty attracted my mind,
His friends sank deep in my heart,
And I loved him no doubt quite too well,
But God saw fit we must part.
When he said he was bound to the sea,
These tidings bereft me of sleep,
I grieved in my spirit, and said:
'I cannot forbear, I must weep.'
My husband went out of my sight,
To me he has never returned,
Perhaps he now lies in the deep
While here I am left for to mourn.
The schooner has never been back,
Nor any the tidings to tell,
How much they endured on the wreck,
Nor how that their lives were expelled.
One night as I lay on my bed
My husband appeared unto me,
Part naked, part clothed, as I thought
In trouble he then seemed to be.
Come all you who wish for good days
And pleasureful hours to see,
Just marry with Jesus your friend,
And widows you never will be.
Mr. Bulger's father used to sing this song, and she had heard
that the minister who preached the funeral sermon, sang it upon
that occasion. By the kindness of Mrs. Seth S. Thornton
of SouthWest Harbor, we are able to give the original broadside,
Of which the preceding version is a traditional rendering.
From Eckstrom MINSTRELSY OF MIAINE
Taken down, September 3, 1926, by the editors,
from the recitation of Mrs. Emeiine (Spurling) Bulger,