King David Had a Pleasant Dream
A soldier and a comely maid, as they walked forth one day,
Many a handsome compliment he unto her did say:
"And shall I kiss your ruby lips? 'Twould make me somewhat bolder."
But "O no, sir; my mamma says I must not kiss a soldier."
The soldier being a forward youth, he took her by the hand
And says, "My dear, the soldier has the world at his command.
Besides, he is the pillow (pillar) strong, he is the land's upholder;
And he's to blame, and she's the same, that speaks against a soldier."
"King David dreamed a pleasant dream as he lay on the ground;
He dreamed he had become a king and wore a golden crown.
He threw off his shepherd cloak that hung about his shoulder,
Picked up his sword that by him laid, and so became a soldier.
"He slew Goliath with a stone that proved his overthrow,
And took his head to Jerusalem in spite of friend or foe;
There he was proclaimed a king, he was the land's upholder,
With a golden crown upon his head he was both king and soldier."
These words they pierced the fair maid's breast, that caused her thus to say,
"I always shall a soldier love until my dying day.
A soldier looks so neat and trim, with his gun fixed on his shoulder!
In spite of all my mamma says I'II kiss the handsome soldier."
"Long may he live and reign"' she says, "and be forever blessed;
And when his days are at an end may he see eternal rest.
But she of whom her love was true was worth a mint of money;
But he of whom his love was false wasn't worth a single penny."
From Ballads and Songs, Belden
Collected from Jesse Williams, 1905