Shaking of the Sheets (Or: the Dance of Death)
Dance, dance the shaking of the sheets
Dance, dance when you hear the piper
Playing, everyone must dance
The Shaking Of The Sheets with me
Bring away the beggar, bring away the king
And every man in his degree,
Bring away the oldest and the youngest thing
Come to death and follow me
Bring away the merchant who made his money in France
And the crafty banker too,
When you hear the piper you and I must dance
The dance that everyone must do.
I'll find you in the courtrooms, I'll find you in the schools
When you hear the piper play,
I'll take away the wise men, I'll take away the fools
And bring their bodies all to clay.
All the politicians of high and low degree,
Lords and ladies great and small,
Don't think that you'll escape and need not dance with me,
I'll make you come when I do call.
It may be in the day, it may be in the night,
Prepare yourselves to dance and pray
That when the piper plays "The Shaking Of The Sheets"
You may to Heaven dance the way.
recorded by Steeleye Span on "Tempted And Tried" (1989)
"Six feet of earth makes us all of one size."