Ballad Of The Truxton And Pollux (Traditional)

See also: The Loss Of The Truxton And Pollux (Simani)

And also: The Truxton Song (Gregory Edwards)

The open sea hath mercy,
but the thund'ring surf hath none,
And when a ship strikes raging reefs,
her day is surely done;
All this the sea-wise people know
who've witnessed ocean's might,
When wintry gales arouse their wrath,
and shoals are foaming white.

Atlantic's heavy billows
churned to seething froth one day,
When two US destroyers headed
for Placentia Bay;
An icy blizzard rendered
visibility to nought,
As the Truxton and the Pollux
'gainst the ccean's fury fought.

Careening wildly on a course
which navigators use,
These ships were swept, by wind and tide,
inside Cape Chapeau Rouge;
And there, beneath colossal cliffs,
they crashed upon the shore,
Where murderous seas erupted
with a terrifying roar.

No printer's ink in bold-faced type
could adequately tell,
The awful tale of tragedy
which on that day befell;
Nor could a commentator's voice
descriptively portray,
The hazards of the rescue,
in a broadcast résumé.

The toughest man, inured to storms,
would find it hard to scale,
Those granite cliffs exposed
to all the frenzy of the gale;
For blended with the ocean's spume,
the spindrift snow whirled 'round,
The icy precipice 'neath which
those ships were hard aground.

But after many lost their lives,
the distant shore to reach,
One sailor luckily was swept
to safety on the beach;
The bleak escarpment then he scaled
and trudged through frozen snow,
Toward St Lawrence where
he told the miners of his woe.

Those coast-wise Newfoundlanders knew
the dangers they would face,
In hauling men to safety
in that God-forsaken place;
But out they went with rescue gear,
the shipwrecked crews to aid,
And US Navy annals now record
the role they played.

A hundred lives and more were saved
that bitter wintry day,
To guard the cause of freedom
in a more effective way;
Such valour was rewarded
by the U S Treasury,
Which built St Lawrence Hospital in 1953.

Today it stands, a monument,
in grateful recognition,
Of townsfolk hospitality
and gallant rescue mission;
Commemorating noble deeds
amid the ocean's roar,
When the Truxton and
the Pollux wrecked,
On Newfoundland's bleak shore.

####.... Author unknown ....####
See more songs about NFLD shipwrecks.


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