Salmon Fishing on the Foyle

Adrenalin rises in every man’s veins
Freed from the long winter’s aches and pains
Salmon sheets to make ready, corks and leads
Are hung top and bottom, dan lights for buoy heads
Half deckers are painted, young men to employ
These silver scaled fish to catch is a joy
Excitement hangs heavy in the salty sea air
Eager to begin fishing our Foyle water’s so fair
St Nicholas St Margaret the Drumaweir too
Wee Sydney St Anthony to name but a few
Stock up on whats needed, local businesses do well
When salmon are running the housewife •s will tell
Of new lino or carpet new shoes and clothes bought
On the strength of more money when the salmon are caught
Putt putt go the engines as they sail down the Foyle
A race for the best spot to begin the days toil
Dan light tied on then shoot her away
Have a snooze or eat packed lunch with a big mug a tae
Get a bit worried when a seal does appear
But a cowan not seal is the name they get here
Net pulled in by hand, either side stands a man
Pulling corks and leads, first and last is the dan
Meshed in by the gills but then gently pulled out
On the quayside, James A Morrison waits patiently about
In a book keeps a record of fish weights for each man
The skipper and crew can take one home for the pan
At the end of the season they tot up what they make
Enough to pay debts and the drink got on tick
All through the season men fish by the tide
Kealey’s bar would be open, food and a drink to provide
A beer and a burger, chicken cooked on a spit
Swapped stories, who caught the most fish, some fibbed a wee bit
There was even a tale that one jumped into the boat
Some saw it happen and say s it’s no j oke
Adrenalin long now, the village stands still
Laws passed by the government! is a r eal bitter pill
A heritage lost, no trade to pass on
The season of salmon, ten years now have gone
Conservation must surely have now done it’s time
Fisher folk on the coast and the islands combined
Let them fish again wild salmon, a tradition for years
Those six weeks of each year helped quash the mens fears
Of loosing their heritage they now fight to retain
Island people, coastal families, their plight will remain
No more hanging corks and leads on a net
Gone are the good times, they’ll never forget