From the recording Raisin' Heck

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Music and lyrics by Esther Wheaton


Red-haired Jeannie was a fine young woman
Went to church 'most every Sunday and a fine young man had spoken
Said he wanted to make that lady his wife but before they walked the aisle
He’d live a sailor’s life

Dear John
You sailed away
Left me here to be a bride another day
Dear John
The rumour's true
You left me here to be another man's too

Young Bill Shearman was a farmer to his bones
Worked in his father's fields and with his father's honeycombs
Jeannie was a city girl with a voice as sweet as sins
Caught his eye one Sunday morning while she was singing Sunday hymns

A man who can work the honey house is surely sweet and brave
A man who can plough a field is strong and true
But a man who leaves his love behind to sail across the ocean
Don’t deserve a pretty woman or that woman’s kind devotion

They went driving out one shining day to see what he would say
Said to Jeannie, "oh my darlin' won't you put that ring away"
So Jeanne took off that sailor's ring and put it out of sight
And old Bill asked that lady if she'd rather be his wife