River-Driver's Lament, The (I Am a River Driver)

DESCRIPTION: I went lumbering at sixteen and courted a pretty girl who caused me to roam. "Sure I'm a river driver and I'm far away from home." "Now I'm old and feeble and in my sickness lie Just wrap me up in my shanty blankets and lie me down to die."
AUTHOR: unknown
EARLIEST DATE: As an entity, 1959 (Peacock); Fowke's fragment dates to 1958
KEYWORDS: courting death lumbering drink rambling floatingverses logger
FOUND IN: Canada(Newf,Ont)
REFERENCES (2 citations):
Peacock, pp. 759-760, "The River Driver's Lament" (1 text, 1 tune)
Fowke-Lumbering #59, "I Am a River Driver" (1 fragment, 1 tune)

Roud #4564
RECORDINGS:
John T. O'Quinn, "The River Driver's Lament" (on PeacockCDROM)
NOTES: Floating verses include adaptations of "I'll eat when I'm hungry", "Build me a castle" and "I'm ... and a long way from home" and "wrap me up in my shanty blankets." - BS
Fowke's very short text ("I'll eat when I'm hungry and drink when I'm dry; If the water don't drown me I'll live till I die, If the water don't drown me while over it I roam, For I am a river driver and far away from home") could be just a lumberjack adaption of "Rye Whiskey," but it's close enough to Peacock to allow us to tentatively lump them. - RBW
Last updated in version 2.6
File: FowL69

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