Traditional Sea Shanties & Sea Songs
The Dark-Eyed Sailor

A Collection of lyrics for traditional Sea Shanties & Songs of the Sea.

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The Dark-Eyed Sailor

As I rov'd out one ev'ning fair
It being in the summertime to take the air
I spied a sailor and a lady gay
: And I stood listen :
To hear what they would say.
2. He said "Fair lady, why do you roam
For the day it is spent and the night is on."
She heaved a sigh, while the tears did roll
: "For my dark-eyed sailor, :
So young and stout and bold.

3. "'Tis seven long years since he left the land,
A ring he took from off his lily-white hand
One half of the ring is still here with me,
: But the other's rolling, :
At the bottom of the sea."

4. He said, "Ye may drive him out of your mind,
Some other young man you'll surely find;
Love turns aside and soon cold does grow,
: Like a winter's morning, :
The hills all white with snow."

5. She said, "I'll never forsake my dear,
Although we're parted this many a year.
Genteel he was and rake like you,
: To induce a maiden, :
To slight the jacket blue."

6. One half of the ring did young William show,
She ran distracted in grief and woe,
Saying, "William, William, I have gold in store
: For my dark-eyed sailor, :
Has proved his overthrow."

7. There is a cottage by yonder lea,
This couple's married and does agree;
So maids be loyal when your love's at sea,
: For a cloudy morning, :
Brings in a sunny day.

E-Book - An Annotated Compendium of Old Time American Songs by James Alverson III