MacEdward Leach and the Songs of Atlantic Canada
Molly and Johnny
Frank Knox NFLD 2 Tape 18 Track 8
St. Shott's Audio:
Ballad

Said Johnny to Molly I'm now going to leave you
Bound to the West Indies my long course to steer
Don' t let my long absence now grieve you or trouble you
Oh my darling I'll be back in the spring of the year

Said Molly to Johnny sure l will go with you
In the midst of all dangers your friend l will be
When the cold stormy winds they are blowing my dearie
I'll be there for to help you to reef your topsail

Your neat little fingers cold cables can' t handle
Your delicate feet on the cold deck can't stand
Your snowy white bosom when the high winds are blowing
Be content lovely Molly and stay on dry land

Come all you fair maidens by me take a warning
Don't trust any young man that's above your degree
For first he will court you and then he will slight you
He will then go and leave you like Johnny left me


Notes


Sources: Roud 527 ("Farewell, Charming Nancy"); Laws K 14 ("Farewell, Charming Nancy"); Henry H755, p. 297.

Text: A dialogue between Jonnie who says he will go to sea and return in the spring of the year, and his beloved Molly who wants to go with him. He dissuades her. The narration jumps to a final verse in which she warns others young maidens about mistrustworthy lovers.

Tune: Triple metre tune but performed with much flexibility. The scale is major and the form abbc.

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