The unfortunate lass

from by Phil Edwards

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As I was a-walking down by the Royal Albion,
Bright was the sunshine and warm was the day,
I spied a young woman, wrapped up in white linen,
Wrapped up in white linen and colder than clay.

I asked her what ailed her, I asked her what failed her,
I asked her the cause of all her complaint.
It's all on account of some handsome young sailor,
Now it's he that has caused me to weep and lament.

And had he but told me before he disordered me,
Had he but warned me before it was time,
I could have got salts and the pills of white mercury,
But now I'm a young girl cut down in my prime.

When I was a young girl I used to seek pleasure,
When I was a young girl, with a sailor so brave.
It's out of the ale-house and into the gaol-house,
Out of the bar-room and into my grave.

So send for my mother to wash and to dress me,
Send for my sister to curl my black hair,
Send for my brother to play the pipe over me,
And sound the dead march as they carry me there.

And send for the preacher to come and pray for me,
Send for the doctor although it's too late
My heart it is breaking, my poor head is aching,
My body's salivating and death is my fate.


from 52 Folk Songs: Violet, released October 7, 2011
After Jon Boden




Phil Edwards Manchester, UK

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