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The Ballad of Jenny Malloy

from Pirates vs. Dragons by Marc Gunn



You meet all types when you're sailing the seas or skies. Jenny was one of the most interesting. A good friend and a surprise to find she was a secretly woman dressed as a man in a world of pirates.


* This is the story of Jenny Malloy
She was handsome rather than cute—
She went off to sea a-dressed as a boy,
Till caught in the wrong birthday suit.

Jenny decided when she was thirteen
That the life of a girl was a bore
So she stole her some trews and a cap and a gun
And left her dull home on the shore.

She applied for a berth with Black Jack Murphy
Because she had heard he was fair.
And he took her on board on the strength of her word
Never thinking to check her down there.

Jenny was clever, she was never caught out.
And the crew came to know her as “Tim”.
They praised the brave lad for the skills that he had
Though they wondered why he didn’t swim.

For years things went fine, but you can’t alter time…
And—as breasts do—hers started to grow.
She’d bind them up tight, but try as she might,
She could not get her voice to stay low.

One night out at sea, with the crew in their cups,
A bet was proposed by O’Hare—
“Let’s whip our poles out,” the man he did shout,
“And see who’s got inches to spare!”

To the wine-sodden crew, with naught better to do,
This seemed like a grand ol’ idear—
But Jenny turned white as the sails on the mast
And she prayed to whoever might hear:

“Oh, Lord, if you’re there, could You lend me a pair—
And give me a handle to crank?
I promise to tithe my whole purse for a year,
And I’ll know who exactly to thank!”

But God and the Devil were busy that day,
Or decided she should pay her due—
‘Cause the trousers went down in a circle all ‘round,
Till Jenny must lower hers too.

Her eyes filled with tears as she thought of the years
These men had all been her best mates.
Then she closed tight her eyes and opened her fly
And delivered herself up to Fate.

When her trousers went down, there was nary a sound
Till the crew as one let out a cheer.
For a cabin boy’s fine when you’re sailing the brine
But a woman is worth more than beer!

So Jenny went on to fortune and fame,
As a pirate both cunning and bold
And her crewmates draw lots for the order of spots
In the queue to her berth in the hold!


from Pirates vs. Dragons, released July 27, 2016
lyrics Rie Sheridan Rose, words Marc Gunn




Marc Gunn Atlanta, Georgia

Marc Gunn is a rhythm and folk musician inspired by Celtic culture, science fiction, fantasy, and cats--Sci F'Irish music.

He breathes new life into the autoharp, which continues to surprise musical veterans and fans alike for its unique sound and spirited energy. It’s like a satirical jam session between The Clancy Brothers and Weird Al Yankovic.
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