The Oxford Book of Ballads - online book

A Selection Of The Best English Lyric Ballads Chosen & Edited by Arthur Quiller-Couch

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The ankers brak, and the topmast lap,
It was sic a deadly storm : And the waves cam owre the broken ship
Till a' her sides were torn.
' O where will I get a gude sailor
To tak' my helm in hand, Till I get up to the tall topmast
To see if I can spy land ?'—
' O here am I, a sailor gude,
To tak' the helm in hand, Till you go up to the tall topmast,
But I fear you'll ne'er spy land.'
He hadna gane a step, a step,
A step but barely ane, When a bolt flew out of our goodly ship,
And the saut sea it came in.
' Go fetch a web o' the silken claith,
Another o' the twine, And wap them into our ship's side,
And let nae the sea come in.'
They fetch d a web o' the silken claith,
Another o' the twine, And they wapp'd them round that gude ship's side.
But still the sea came in.
lap] sprang.          vvap] wrap.
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