—— folk family and jam

John Riley

Fair young maid all in her garden
Strange young man passed her by
Said fair maid will you marry me
this, kind sir, was her reply.

Oh no kind sir, I will not marry thee
For I've a love who sails all on the sea
He's been gone these seven long years
Still no man may marry me

Well what if he's in some battle slain
What if he's drownded in the salt salt sea
What if he's found another love
And he and his love both married be

Well if he's in some battle slain
I'll be true till the sun doth wane
If he's drownded in the salt salt sea
I'll be true to his memory

If he's found another love
He and his love both married be
I wish them health and happiness
Where they dwell across the sea

Well he's picked her up all in his arms
Kisses give her one two and three
Saying weep no more my own true love
I am your long lost John Riley

Joan Baez - had it on her first album; and I had her first album.  She spread this version around in the early sixties.  
This can only be a sailor's song, the girl an entirely improbable fantasy of a sailor's love, faithful far beyond the call of reason.
The theme is an often recurring one - a test for the beloved put by the lover in disguise.  As in Sovay - where the woman dresses up as a (male) highwayman and forces her love to give her the ring he has promised to keep faithfully.