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Poem by John Cannell


The Herring Song


Ye seamen of Mona, come join heart and hand,
To sing of the season which gladdens our land;
Weve plenty of money to procure bread and beef,
Yet potatoes and herrings must rule as our chief.

The season being over, we should not complain,
For health, and all mercies, well thankful rem am;
Still praise our Preserver for blessings bestowd,
When herrings remove to their southern abode.

Their quarters prepard by our Maker all-wise,
The snares and the dangers they seem to despise;
They rest for a season, and then come again,
Bal-ny-howe upon Greebas our spot for em then.

Tho oft wet and cold, both by day and by night,
We follow our business with joy and delight
When fish multiplies and foretells a good take,
The line and the hook are prepared for the hake.

Tis pleasant to witness good hauls coming in,
And so a fine day is, to sell it again;
To sell to good buyers, with beer at command,
And sing with a shake of the landladys hand.

With an honest got morsel and a cup of good beer,
As snug as our farmers, well live round the year;
Well heartily drink to the health of our men,
And none are more cheerful who tug at the train.

And now my dear Mona, to finish my rhyme,
May plenty of herrings for ever be thine
Preserve the great blessing, thou God of all grace,
And may it redound to thy glory and praise!



John Cannell


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