Traditional Songs from Canada   


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Banks of Newfoundland, The (Version 3)


Oh, ye may bless your happy lots,
all ye who dwell on shore
For it's little ye know of the hardships
that we poor seamen bore
It's little ye know of the hardships
that we were forced to stand
For fourteen days and fifteen nights
on the Banks of Newfoundland.

Our ship she sailed through frost
and snow from the day we left Quebec
And if we had not walked about
we'd have frozen to the deck
But we being true-born sailormen
as ever a ship had manned
Our Captain doubled our grog each day o
n the Banks of Newfoundland.

There never was a ship, my boys,
that sailed the western sea
But the billowy waves came rollin' in
and bent them into staves
Our ship being built of unseasoned wood
and could but little stand
The hurricane it met us there
on the Banks of Newfoundland.

We fasted for three days and nights,
our provisions giving out
On the morning of the fourth day
we cast our lots about
The lot it fell on the Captain's son;
thinking relief at hand
We spared him for another night
on the Banks of Newfoundland.

On the morning of the fifth day
no vessel did appear
We gave to him another hour
to offer up a prayer
But Providence to us proved kind,
kept blood from every hand
For an English vessel hove in sight
on the Banks of Newfoundland.

We hoisted aloft our signal;
they bore down on us straightway
When they saw our pitiful condition
they began to weep and pray
Five hundred souls we had on board
the day we left land
There's now alive but seventy-five
on the Banks of Newfoundland.

They took us off of the wreck, my boys;
we were more like ghosts than men
They fed us and they clothed us
and brought us back again
They fed us and they clothed us
and brought us safe to land
While the billowy waves roll o'er their graves
on the Banks of Newfoundland.
 

 
            




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