If there's any offense, please stop my hand,
By ye I'll be advised,
I mean to state what did take place
In eighteen fifty-five.
Last Saturday being our thirtieth day
Cast on the raging main,
One single pound but a day
Each man for to maintain.
We're running all night on close-reef sails,
Expecting to meet the land;
What joys to see! - We're eagerly
Wating for to shake hands.
"No land, no light," Bull Yorkens cried,
"No land there is in view;
The daylight is approaching,
And forward we'll heave to."
But when the daylight cleared away,
A landed light we spied.
"Make sail, my boys!" Bull Yorkens cried,
"To get 'er in we'll try."
Two youths to loosen our forecourse,
Their orders to obey,
And one of them, poor fellow, fell
From our fore-yard that day.
At the time he fell eight knots and a half
She was taken from the rail,
At mediant day our helmsman
A-starboard swung the wheel.
So nimbly in our fore-yard we spun,
And our boats we launched by hand;
At the time he fell eight minutes passed,
He was a floating man.
Those hardy tars to save their lives
They exerted all their skill,
But breakers white all foaming
The boats began to fill.
The breakers white all foaming
Which over us did come down,
'Twas every man's opinion
What was in the boat will drown.
Bull Yorkens walked the quarterdeck,
Unto his men did say:
"Let go your fore and main brace,
Let your main-yards square away!"
For leaving this poor lad behind,
A lad we all loved dear,
The ocean deep to take asleep,
We're four miles from Cape Spear.
Now the Elizabeth she is arrived
And anchored in St. John's,
The wharves they are all crowded
With women and with men.
Down came his old-aged father,
A-wiping off his eyes,
And cried out broken-hearted,
"Where did you leave my child?"
He cried out broken-hearted,
"Where did you leave my child?
For his tender mother I am sure
Will certainly run wild."
Oh don't lament, you parents,
The losing of your son,
A proper prayer is offered up
For him that now is gone.
Likewise men and cabin boys,
Men, women and children,
A proper prayer for Andrew Shean,
May he rest in peace! Amen.