Cruising Round Yarmouth
A neat little forebitter allegedly dating to the late 19th century and the sailors involved in the East India trade. This is my version, or more exactly, an example of the folk process in that the performer makes it his own.
Whilst cruising round Yarmouth* one day on a spree
I met a fair doxy, the wind blowing free [pause for one beat]
I’m a fast-going packet, my kind sir, says she
I’m-a ready for cargo, me hold is quite free
* or New London, or ‘round Essex, or whichever town you’d like.
Singing fal de-ral laddie right fal de-ral day
Fal de-ral laddie right fal de-ral day
What country she come from I could not tell thence,
But by her appearance I thought she was French.
Her flag showed its colours and her masthead was low,
She was round in the quarter and bluff in the bow.
So I tossed her my hauser and I took her in tow;
Yardarm to yardarm together we’d go.
We both dropped our mud hooks out there in the bay,
She led me to a pub* and a place we could lay.
*the Gris, or some such.
She took me upstairs and her tops’l she lowered.
In a neat little parlour she soon had me moored.
She laid in the foresails, the staysails and all;
With her lily-white hand let me reef-tackle fall.
*She pushed me back hard, on her bed I did land
She cried, “Boarders Away!” and then jumped on my man!
We rode through the rollers like a tempest did roar,
The bed sprung a post and we bore to the floor!
*This verse written by Joseph to “flesh out” the story, if you will.
> Chorus then instrumental break.
The watch being ended I said, Maid give o’er;
‘Twixt wind and water you’ve run me ashore!
My shot-locker’s empty, my powder is spent,
I can’t fire a shot for it’s choked at the vent!
Well here’s luck to that girl with the black curly locks,
Here’s luck to that girl who ran Jack on the rocks,
Here’s luck to the doctor who eased all me pain,
He squared me main yards – I’m a-cruising again!
> Chorus 2x