—— folk family and jam

poor boy

As I went down to the river poor boy,
to see the ships go by
My sweetheart stood on the deck of one
And she waved to me good-bye

Bow down your head and cry, poor boy,
Bow down your head and cry
Stop thinking about that woman you love
Bow down your head and cry.

I followed her for months and months
She offered me her hand
We was just to get about to get married
I fought with a gambling man

Well he came at me with a big jack knife
I went at him with lead
And when that fight was over poor boy
He lay down beside me dead

They took me to the big jailhouse
The months and months rolled by
At last they found me guilty poor boy
And the judge said I must die

And if they call this justice, poor boy,
Then justice let it be
But I only killed a man that was
A-figuring to kill me

Bow down your head ...


I got it from Burl Ives.

Another of these songs of people in the American frontier country. 

Some songs are easy to find on the net - there are extensive entries and loads of hits.  Not all of these entries can be trusted, incidentally, and a mistake on one web-site is quickly duplicated on others because they get stuff from each other - and suddenly it seems to be substantiated.
This one is difficult to find at all.