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Words to Old Newfoundland Songs
Heard Around the Bonavista Bay Region




In cuttin' and haulin', in frost an' in snow,
We're up against troubles that few people know,
And 'tis only by patience with courage and grit
And eatin' plain food that we keep ourselves fit ;
The hard an' the aisey we takes as it comes?
When the pond freezes over we shortens our runs.
To hurry my hauling, the spring coming on,
Near lost my fine mare in on Tickle Cove Pond.

Oh, lay hold, William Oldford; lay hold, William White,
Lay hold of the cordage and pull all your might;
Lay hold of the bowline and pull all you can,
And give me a lift for poor Kit on the Pond.

I knew that the ice became weaker each day,
But still took the risk and kept hauling away.
One evenin' in April, bound home with a load,
The mare showed some halting against the ice road,
And knew more than I did, as matters turned out?
And lucky for me if I joined her in doubt.
She turned round her head and with tears in her eyes,
As if she was saying"You're riskin' our lives."

All this I ignored with a whip?handle blow,
For man is too stupid dumb creatures to know.
The very next minute the pond gave a sigh,
And down to our necks went poor Kitty and I.
Though if I'd taken poor Kitty's advice
I never would take the short cut on the ice.
Poor creature, she's dead, and, poor creature, she's gone.
I'll ne'er get my wood off of Tickle Cove Pond.

I raised an alarm you could hear for a mile,
And neighbours turned up in a very short while?
You can always rely on the Oldfords and Whites
To render assistance in all your bad plights.
To help the poor neighbour is part of their lives,
The same I can say of their children and wives.
When the bowline was fastened around the mare's breast
William White for a shanty song made a request :

There was no time for thinking, No time for delay,
So straight from my head
Came this song right away:
Lay hold, William Oldford; lay hold William White,
Lay hold to the ropes and pull all your might?
Lay hold to the bowline and pull all you can:
With that we brought kit out of Tickle Cove Pond.



Contributed by Martha Warren

Page Revised: July 2002 (Don Tate)

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