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Elphinstone Kist   Art, Doric Verse

The Ferryman     by: Mackie, Lewis Dr.

Source: The Ferryman - William Dyce

Fit is it ye see ma dear auld freen,
Peerin oot ower the mist?
Only slow watter an’ dreich lookin hills
Casten shadows oot tae the west?
Ilka day like anither, heavin at oars,
Workin at abody’s bidden,
Fit thochts hiv ye got, fillin your min’?
Fit lost ambeetions hidden?


“Na, na,ma loon, nae hills div I see,
Bit great muckle masts an’ fite sails,
For you’ve niver bin far A’ve bin,
Among heavy seas an fierce gales.
In the hot southern isles a bonny wee lass
Eence lost her young hert tae me.
An’ A’ll grasp that young hert wi’ twa or three ithers,
An treasure them a’ till e dee.

“Ferryman, ferryman”, that’s fit they shout
As I work the half mile back an’ fore,
Bit ma min’ is at sea on happier times,
Miles awa, on a far distant shore.
A’m growin auld noo, an’ I get affa tired,
An a penny a trip’s nae a livin.

An’ I worry at times, as age taks its toll
An’ I ging tae the Lord at his biddin’
An’ A’ll say tae my Maker “Get somebody else”,
An should he turn roon an say “Niver”!
He’ll maybe sit doon an mak sure on that day
They’ll be biggin’ a brig ower the river!



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