Friday, July 13, 2007

Nelly Gray

Oh, My Darling Nelly Gray


A few years ago, listening to this old song that I had heard and even sung when I was very young, I finally paid attention to all the words. They were a shock. When I told someone about those words, that person didn’t want to believe what the words said.
On a CD Thomas Hampson sings the words very distinctly.
Here are the words:



Darling Nelly Gray

(B.R. Hanby)

There's a low green valley by the old Kentucky shore
Where we've whiled many happy hours away,
A-sitting and a-singing by the little cottage door,
Where lived my darling Nelly Gray.

cho: Oh my poor Nelly Gray, they have taken you away
And I'll never see my darling any more.
I'm a-sitting by the river and I'm weeping all the day
For you're gone from the old Kentucky shore.

When the moon had climbed the mountain, and the stars were shining too,
Then I'd take my darling Nellie Gray.
We would float down the river in my little red canoe,
While my banjo so sweetly I would play.

One night I went to see her but "she's gone" the neighbors say,
The white man bound her with his chain,
They have taken her to Georgia to wear her life away,
As she toils in the cotton and the cane.

My canoe is under water and my banjo is unstrung
I'm tired of living anymore;
My eyes shall look downward and my songs shall be unsung
While I stay on the old Kentucky shore.

My eyes are getting blinded and I cannot see my way,
Hark! there's someone knocking at my door;
Oh! I hear the angels calling and I see my Nelly Gray
Farewell to the old Kentucky shore.

Final cho:
Oh, my darling Nelly Gray, up in heaven there they say
That they'll never take you from me any more;
I'm a-coming, coming coming as the angels clear the way
Farewell to the old Kentucky shore.

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