Cecil Sharp collected the song from Sister Emma of Clewer, Berkshire on 27th February 1909.

Twas 9 o'clock by the bells & we were not far from land
When we saw a mermaid sitting on a rock with a glass & a comb in her hand

Chorus: & the raging seas did roar & the stormy winds did blow
& the sailor climbed to the top gallant mast with the landlubber lying down below.
Then up spoke the captain of the ship & a fine old man was he
Says:Ive got a wife in fair Bristol Town & tonight a widow she will be

Then up then spoke the captain's mate & a fine young man was he
Says:I've got two boys in fair Bristol Town & tonight they orphans will be.

Then up spoke the little cabin boy & a good little boy was he
O I have a mammy in fair Bristol Town & tonight she'll be weeping for me.

But I've heard my mammy say there's one who rules the waves
And he can, if he please, bring us all to land & save us from a watery grave

Then the captain went home to his wife & the mate to his sons,ne'er to part
But none's so happy as the little cabin boy when his mammy hugged him close to her heart.

As sung by Mary Humphreys on album "Sharp Practice" (Wild Goose WGS312CD)
From Mary Humphreys and Anahata's web site