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Poem by Henry Newbolt

Master and Man

Do ye ken hoo to fush for the salmon?
  If ye'll listen I'll tell ye.
Dinna trust to the books and their gammon,
  They're but trying to sell ye.
Leave professors to read their ain cackle
  And fush their ain style;
Come awa', sir, we'll oot wi' oor tackle
  And be busy the while.

'Tis a wee bit ower bright, ye were thinkin'?
  Aw, ye'll no be the loser;
'Tis better ten baskin' and blinkin'
  Than ane that's a cruiser.
If ye're bent, as I tak it, on slatter,
  Ye should pray for the droot,
For the salmon's her ain when there's watter,
  But she's oors when it's oot.

Ye may just put your flee-book behind ye,
  Ane hook wull be plenty;
If they'll no come for this, my man, mind ye,
  They'll no come for twenty.
Ay, a rod; but the shorter the stranger
  And the nearer to strike;
For myself I prefare it nae langer
  Than a yard or the like.

Noo, ye'll stand awa' back while I'm creepin'
  Wi' my snoot i' the gowans;
There's a bonny twalve-poonder a-sleepin'
  I' the shade o' yon rowans.
Man, man! I was fearin' I'd stirred her,
  But I've got her the noo!
Hoot! fushin's as easy as murrder
  When ye ken what to do.

Na, na, sir, I doot na ye're willin'
  But I canna permit ye;
For I'm thinkin' that yon kind o' killin'
  Wad hardly befit ye.
And some work is deefficult hushin',
  There'd be havers and chaff:
'Twull be best, sir, for you to be fushin'
  And me wi' the gaff.

Henry Newbolt

Henry Newbolt's other poems:
  1. The Quarter-Gunner's Yarn
  2. Northumberland
  3. The Non-Combatant
  4. The School at War
  5. Waggon Hill

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