Digital Tradition Mirror

Guy Reed

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Guy Reed
(Joe Scott)

Oh well I do remember one dark and stormy night
The rain it fell in torrents and the lightning flashed so bright
The moon, the stars above us could not their lights reveal
For dark clouds so gloomy their welcome light concealed.

Thc post brought me a letter I hastened to peruse
It was written by a friend of mine, it bore me startling news
Once I knew a fine young man as e'er you'd wish to see
How in an instant he was hurled into eternity.

Whilst he and his companions where the angry waters roar
Were breaking down some landings on the Andrew Goggan shore
They worked the face of one of them from the bottom to the top
Full thirty feet this landing had a perpendicular drop.

For to work the face much longer, it would be a foolish part
A jar so light, you see, it might this lofty landing start
A crew quickly 'cided that one of them must go
For to roll a log down from the top to start the brow below.

This young man he among them with a heart both stout and brave
Not thinking that before night he'd be all straightened for the grave;
Not thinking that Death's cruel hand so soon would lay him low
And he'd leave his friends he loved so dear in sorrow, grief and woe.

This young man tben he approached the verge of landing high;
While all the crew there with pale cbeeks and trembling limbs stood by; t
A log he quickly canted, as the landing creaked below,
But as it stopped there in a verge, it would no longer go.

Up went a shout of warning for to warn him of his fate
And as he paused to look around he seemed to hesitate
A log he quickly canted, and the landing broke like glass
And quick as thought he disappeared into the rolling mass.

The logs they quickly canted from off his mangled form.
The birds were sweetly singing, the the sun shone bright and warm;
Strong men knelt down beside him, their grief could not command
While hidden tears that fell like rain and rolled into the sand.

His comrades bore him gently, laid him down on the green
Beneath a spreading spruce that stood beside a babbling stream
The burbling, sparkling water rolled o'er its rocky bed
And seemed to whisper soft and low, "Farewell unto the dead."

This young man he was buried by the order of K.C.
A funeral more attended you would very seldom see
The churchyard it was crowded with people young and old
To view the face, once bright in life, in death now pale and cold.

His brothers of the order as they walked two by two,
On his casket a spray let fall, the token of adieu

Now his mother she died early when he was but a child
They laid her down to slumber in a churchyard fair but wild.
A sister and a brother now sleeping by her side
In a village churchyard that's near the river's dancing tide.

His poor old aged father is stricken down with grief
The joys of earthly pleasures will give him no relief
His untold gold and silver, possession, wealth in store
Sunny skies nor music sweet cannot the dead restore.

The blackbird and the swallow, the sunshine, and the rain
The robin and the thrush in the spring will come again,
The songbirds and the sparrows over foreign lands may soar
But the ones we leave in Death's fast sleep can come again no more

Come all you friends and kinfolks, pray for him who's dead and gone
To a better land in Heaven far away beyond the sun
The ones we loved most dearly we'll never again see more,
Until we cross Death's valley to that great eternal shore.

From Folksongs of New Brunswick, Ives
Collected from Perley Hare, 1958
DT #709
Laws C9

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