The Two Boys From Brewley (MacEdward Leach)

Attention Newfoundlanders,
and listen to my song,
And if you pay attention,
it won't delay you long;
It's of two men from Brewley
went in to have some fun,
They went up to St Peters
all for a bowl of rum.

The day it being a fine one,
the sun was shining bright,
And on that following evening
they arrived there just at night;
They took on board their heavy stock
and then the wind bore down,
They then set sail for Brewley
and left St Peter's town.

The wind brought them to St Lawrence,
the sky a kind of light.
Our skipper says, "Sure we'll go in
where we can take a night."
We'd anchored 'round a point of beach
and towed our line ashore,
"I think," he says, "that we can sleep
while wind and sea do roar."

Oh, now the storm is raging,
and those came out all right,
And when the water smoothered down
again they put her out;
They laid up in the evening,
the sky too thick with snow,
And very shortly after,
on board the wind did blow.

No compass for to guide them,
no way to rig a light,
They ran her then 'fore wind and sea
all that long winter's night;
Oh, who could know the feelings
of those two Brewley men,
Cast on the stormy ocean,
nothing to comfort them?

The ocean in a snowdrift,
while wind and sea do roar,
The ocean in a snowdrift,
they say where can they go?
They caught each other by the hand
to part forevermore,
They thought that night they'd never
see their friends again ashore.

We must pray to the Almighty
and His Blessed Mother, too,
Likewise our Blessed Saviour
who died for me and you;
The blood was frozen in their veins
and salt tears in their eyes,
They raised their voice to Heaven
and He heard their mournful cries.

It wasn't very long after
when a vessel hove in sight,
The captain's name was Harvey,
was out that cruel night;
When Harvey saw them coming,
he called his men on deck,
Saying, "B'ys, just look to wind'ard
and see what makes us pray.

"We have no means of saving them,"
he says unto his crew,
"Get ropes and life bouys ready
and we'll try what we can do."
And when they came in call of them
that rang with all their might,
Saying, "Save us, Captain, save us,
oh, try and save our life."

There were no time for talking,
he told them what to do,
He said, "Run 'round our quarter
and then bring her to."
They then grabbed hold on those
two men and dragged them in,
They placed them by a hard-coal fire
and gave them boiled wine.

Harvey then gave orders,
unto his men did say,
"The wind is on a drop, my boys,
we'll get her underway;
So trim your canvas by the wind
and then we'll reach her down."
And on that following evening
they arrived at Marystown.

Come all you men from Brewley,
I'll have you to beware,
Don't go up to St Peters till
the springtime of the year;
When winter storms are raging,
afraid you'll get a fright,
For Harvey won't be there,
waiting to save your life.

####.... Author unknown. Traditional Newfoundland ballad ....####

Collected in 1951 from John James [1903-?] of Trepassey, NL, and published in MacEdward Leach And The Songs Of Atlantic Canada © 2004 Memorial University of Newfoundland Folklore and Language Archive (MUNFLA).

From Wikipedia:
Brewley - Great Brule (Also known as Bruley, Brewley or Brule) is a settlement on the northern tip of Merasheen Island in Placentia Bay in Newfoundland and Labrador. The first permanent residents in the community were recorded in 1813. The cod fishery was the primary source of employment in Great Brule. Between 1951 and 1956 the community was abandoned and most of the residents relocated to larger centers in Placentia Bay.


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