The Balena

(The Balaena; The Noble Fleet of Whalers; Dundee Whalers; The Old Polina)

There's a mighty fleet of whalers, a-sailin' from Dundee,
They're mann'd by British sailors for to take 'em o'er the sea,
On a Western Ocean passage there's none that can compare,
An the smartest ship to-o make the trip is Balena I declare.

And the wind is on the quarter- an' the sails are full an' free,
There's not another whaler a-sailin' the Arctic sea,
Can beat the old Balena; an' she need not try it on,
For we challenge all, both great an' small, from Dundee to St. Johns!

There's the new built Terra Nova; she's a model without doubt.
The Arctic and Aurora, ye've heard so much about,
There's Jackson's model mail boat, the terror of the sea,
But she couldn't beat Balena on the passage from Dundee.

Bold Jackson carries canvas an' fairly raises steam,
An' Cap'n Gay with the Erin Boy does plowin' thro' the stream,
An' Mullen says the Eskineau will beat the bloomin' lot,
To beat the ol' Balena, oh, she'll find it rather hot.

An' now that we are landed where the rum is mighty cheap,
We'll drink success to our cap'n for guidin' us o'er the deep,
A health to all our sweethearts an' to our wives so fair,
Not another ship could make that trip but Balena I declare.

Dundee Whalers
From Songs of the Sea by Stan Hugill (1977)