With our nets and gear we’re faring
O’er the wild and wasteful ocean
It’s there on the deep that we harvest and reap our bread
As we hunt the bonny shoals of herring.
2. It was on a fine and a pleasant day
Out of Yarmouth harbour I was faring
As a cabin boy on a sailing lugger
For to go and hunt the shoals of herring.
3. Now the work was hard and the hours were long
And the treatment sure it took some bearing
Her was little kindness and the kicks were many
As we hunted for the shoals of herring.
4. Oh we fished the Swarth and the Dogger Bank
I was cook and I’d a quarter-sharing
And I used to sleep standing on me feet
And I’d dream about the shoals of herring.
5. Oh! We left the home grounds in the month of June
And for canny Shiels we soon were bearing
With a hundred cran of the silver darling
That we’d taken from the shoals of herring.
6. Now you’re up on deck you’re a fisherman
You can swear and show a manly bearing
Take your turn on watch with the other fellows
While you’re searching for shoals of herring.
7. In the stormy seas and the living gale
Just to earn your daily bread you’re daring
From the Dover Straits to the Faeroe Islands
As you’re following the shoals of herring.
8. Oh I earned my keep and I paid me way
And I earned the gear that I was wearing
Sailed a million miles, caught ten million fishes
We were sailing after shoals of herring.