Blow the Man Down


Lyrics from Songs of American Sailormen, by Joanna Colcord

Come all you young fellows that follow the sea.
To me way-aye, blow the man down!
Now pray pay attention and listen to me.
Give me some time to blow the man down!

I'm a deep-water sailor just come from Hongkong;
To me way-aye, blow the man down!
If you'll give some whiskey I'll sing you a song.
Give me some time to blow the man down!

On a trim Black Ball liner I first served my time,
And in that Black Baller I wasted my prime.

It's when a Black Baller's preparing for sea,
You'd split your sides laughing the sights you would see,

At the tinkers and tailors and sojers and all,
For you'll seldom find sailors aboard a Black Ball.

'Tis when the Black Baller is clear of the land
The crew musters aft at the word of command.

"Lay aft," is the cry, "to the break of the poop,
Or I'll help you along with the toe of my boot."

"Pay attention to orders, now you one and all,
For see, right above you there flies the Black Ball."

'Tis larboard and starboard on deck you will sprawl,
For Kicking Jack Williams commands that Black Ball.


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