MacEdward Leach and the Songs of Atlantic Canada
Oidhche Dhomh 's Mi Siubhal a'Chuain
(One Night When I Was Sailing the Seas)
George MacAskill CB 1 Tape 9 Track 9
Englishtown Audio:
Milling Song


Ho hi rithill a bha ho
Ho hi rithill a bha ho
Eiribh illean thug i o
Mo chrìdhe trom 's cha neònach.

Oidhche dhomh 's mi siubhal a chuain
Shèl i sheid i dh'fhàs i fuar
Dhomhsa b' èiginn a dhol suas
Mo thruaighe 's gun mi eòlach.

Ràinig mise leth a'chruinn
Thubhairt mi ris nach d'rachainn ann
Thubhairt e feumaidh tu dhol ann
'S e sin a gheall thu dhomhsa.

Thill mi sin is ghabh mi suas
Rinn mi 'n "topsail" dheanamh suas
Thubhairt e rium nuair thàinig mi nuas
Nach robh e suainte bòidheach.

Mar a bheil e sion a dh'fheum
Seo a fear nach seall na dheigh
Ged a shiùbhladh e dhan speur
Na riobagan 's na shràicean

Tha beul an t-Sasunnaich cho cruaidh
E gu labhairt gu math luath
Ged a bhiodh a ghob nam chluais
Cha chluinte fuaim na ròpa.

Tha mo chrìdhe dhuit cho blàth
Tha ris a bhainne bhlàth
E co-ionnan ris a chàis
A dh'fhaisgeadh tu le d' mheòirean.

Tha mo chrìdhe dhuit cho buan
Ris a chreig a th'anns a chuan
E co-ionnan ris an stuadh
... a bh'ann an còmhnaidh.


Ho hi rithill a bha ho
O hi rithill a bha ho
Rise boys o hoist her up
My heart is sad and heavy

One night as I sailed the seas
It rained, the wind blew and it was cold
I was made to climb the mast
Alas I have no experience.

I got half way to the mast
And told him I would not go
He said, you will have to climb it
You gave me your promise.

I then turned back and climbed the mast
And secured the topsail
He said to me when I came down
It is not folded properly.

If that is of no use
This is one who won't look back
Though it were to reach the skies
Tattered and torn to shreds.

The Englishman is hard mouthed
He was speaking very quickly
When his mouth is to my ear
I cannot hear the sound of the ropes

I have a warmth in my heart for you
As the milk is warm when fresh
It is the same as the crowdie
You would squeeze through your fingers.

My love for you is lasting
Like the rock in the sea
It is as the ocean
...there always.


This sailing song was probably composed in Scotland. The tune and chorus are taken from a much older song which is commonly used in Nova Scotian Gaelic song compositions.

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