By a storm-torn shoreline a women is standing,
The spray strung like jewels in her hair;
And the sea tore the rocks near that desolate landing
As though it had known she stood there.
For she has come down to condemn that wild ocean,
For the murderous loss of her man;
His boat sailed out on Wednesday morning,
And it's feared she's gone down with all hands.
Oh and white were the wave caps and wild was their parting,
So fierce is the warring of love;
And she prayed to the gods, both of men and of sailors,
Not to cast their cruel nets o'er her love. So…(CHO)
There's a school on the hill where the sons of dead fathers
Are led toward tempest and gale;
Where their God-given wings are clipped close to their bodies,
And their eyes are wrapped round with ships' sails. So…(CHO)
What force leads a man to a life filled with danger,
High on seas or a mile underground?
It's when need is his master and poverty's no stranger,
And there's no other work to be found. So…(CHO)
(Words and music by Andy Stewart,
© Shanachie Records, 1981, used with permission.
As sung by Teresa Morgan on Victory Sings at Sea, © 1989.)