Verse > Anthologies > William McCarty, ed. > The American National Song Book
William McCarty, comp.  The American National Song Book.  1842.
A Sailor’s Life
HOW bless’d the life a sailor leads,
  From clime to clime still ranging,
For as the calm the storm succeeds,
  The scene delights by changing.
Though tempests howl along the main,        5
  Some object will remind us,
And cheer with hope to meet again
  The friends we left behind us.
    Then, under full sail, we laugh at the gale,
      Though the landsmen look pale, never heed ’em;        10
    But toss off the glass to a favourite lass,
      To America, Commerce, and Freedom.
But when arrived in sight of land,
  Or safe in port rejoicing;
Our ship we moor, our sails we hand,        15
  Whilst out the boat is hoisting.
With cheerful hearts the shore we reach,
  Our friends delight to greet us;
And, tripping lightly o’er the beach,
  The pretty lasses meet us.        20
    When the full-flowing bowl enlivens the soul,
      To foot it we merrily lead ’em;
    And each bonny lass will drink off a glass
      To America, Commerce, and Freedom.
Our prizes sold, the chink we share,        25
  And gladly we receive it;
And when we meet a brother tar
  That wants, we freely give it.
No freeborn sailor yet had store,
  But cheerfully would lend it;        30
And when ’tis gone, to sea for more;
  We earn it but to spend it.
    Then drink round, my boys, ’tis the first of our joys
      To relieve the distress’d, clothe and feed ’em;
    ’Tis a duty we share with the brave and the fair,        35
      In this land of Commerce and Freedom.

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