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FAREWELL TO TARWATHIE
George Scroggie

Farewell to Tarwathie, adieu, Mormond Hill,
And the dear land of Crimond, I bid you farewell;
I'm bound out for Greenland and ready to sail,
In hopes to find riches in hunting the whale.

Adieu to my comrades, for a while we must pairt,
And likewise the dear lass wha fair won my hairt;
The cold ice of Greenland my love will not chill,
And the longer my absence, more loving she'll feel.

Our ship is weel rigged and she's ready to sail,
Our crew they are anxious to follow the whale;
Where the icebergs do float and the stormy winds blaw,
Where the land and the ocean are covered wi snaw.

The cold coast of Greenland is barren and bare,
No seed-time or harvest is ever known there;
And the birds here sing sweetly on mountain and dale,
But there isna a birdie to sing to the whale.

There is no habitation for a man to live there,
And the king of that country is the fierce Greenland bear;
And there'll be no temptation to tarry long there,
Wi our ship bumper full we will homeward repair.

Footnote - I first heard this song in 1965 when attending a session of the Aberdeen Folk Club, it was the only North-East song sung that night! George Scroggie, one-time miller at Federate in the Parish of New Deer, Aberdeenshire, wrote this haunting song in the early 1850s.

 

 


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