My Blackbird Is Gone – Trad. Civil war era
Sung by Jimmy Driftwood, 1960, in the Wolf Collection. "My Blackbird is Gone, a Civil War Song that the listener will have to interpret for himself. It might be a white boy or a white girl singing about a black mammy that he might have had. It could be a black boy singing about his sweetheart that's gone. Well, as Alan Lomax says, you have to interpret this song for yourself." J.D.
She had the soul of an angel;
She had a heart that was true.
Her lips were sweet as the hummingbird's mouth,
All filled with the sweet honeydew.
She taught me how to be humble;
She taught me how to pray.
I thought I would die when she said goodbye,
And they carried my blackbird away.
Chorus: My blackbird is gone,
My blackbird is gone,
My blackbird is gone away (I'll never forget the sad day).
They came with a chain,
They called her sweet name,
And they carried my blackbird away
List to the roar of the cannons;
Look at the battle array.
It's all because of the tears that I shed
When they carried my blackbird away.
Angels a-singing in heaven
Hushed their sweet songs when they heard
The cries of my heart when they tore me apart
From the arms of my pretty blackbird.
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