The Claudy Banks

While were on the subject of various banks, here’s an English ballad performed by Eliza Carthy, Norma Waterson, and Martin Carthy.

The Claudy Banks

As I rode out one evening all in the month of May
Down by the banks of Claudy I carelessly did stray
There I beheld a fair maid in sorrow did complain
Lamenting of her own true love who had crossed the raging main

Ey-oh ey-oh he is my darling boy
He is the darling of my heart
All on the walls of Troy

I stepped up unto her and caught her in great surprise
I own she did not know me for I was in disguise
I said My pretty fair maid my joy and heart’s delight
How far do you mean to wander on this dark and dreary night

Oh the banks of Claudy I wish you would me show
Take on a fair young maid who has nowhere else to go
For I’m in search of a young man young Johnny it is his name
And on the banks of Claudy I hear he does remain

Ey-oh ey-oh he is my darling boy
He is the darling of my heart
All on the walls of Troy

This is the banks of Claudy on them you do now stand
Do not believe your Johnny for he is a false young man
Do not believe young Johnny he will not meet you here
Through the green woods you may tarry no danger you may fear

Oh but if Johnny he was here tonight he would keep me from all harm
But he’s on the field of battle and in his uniform
He’s on the field of battle all danger does defy
Like a royal king of honour all in the wars of Troy

Ey-oh ey-oh he is my darling boy
He is the darling of my heart
All on the walls of Troy

It’s six long months and better since my Johnny left the shore
To cross the raging ocean where the thundering billows roar
To cross the raging ocean for honour and for fame
And I heard his ship was wrecked all on the cruel coast of Spain

As soon as she had heard this she fell in a deep despair
Awringing of her lily-white hands and atearing of her hair
Saying If my Johnny’s drownded no other man I’ll take
Through lonesome woods and valleys will I wander for his sake

Ey-oh ey-oh he is my darling boy
He is the darling of my heart
All on the walls of Troy

As soon as he had heard this no longer could he stand
He flew into her arms crying Betsy I’m the man
Saying Betsy I’m the young man who’s caused you grief and pain
And since we’ve met on Claudy banks we will never part again

Ey-oh ey-oh he is my darling boy
He is the darling of my heart
All on the walls of Troy

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