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Da Fetlar Lullaby

By Sinclair Shewan

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Husha-baa Mam's peerie flooer;

Sleep o sleep come ta dee shön.

Mam sall watch dee ooer be ooer

Till dy boannie sleep is döne.

Till dy boannie sleep is döne,

Till dy boannie sleep is döne,

Mam sall watch dee ooer be ooer

Till dy boannie sleep is döne.

 

Bide, da simmer days ir comin;

Dan we'll rin aboot da knows,

See da bees aa fleein, hummin,

Peerie lambs an muckle yowes,

Peerie lambs an muckle yowes,

Peerie lambs an muckle yowes,

See da bees aa fleein, hummin,

Peerie lambs an muckle yowes.

 

Noo dan! Here comes Willie Winkie,

Baetin, baetin on his drum;

Playin on his plinkie-plinkie;

Rest an slumber shön 'ill come.

Rest an slumber shön 'ill come,

Rest an slumber shön 'ill come,

Playin on his plinkie-plinkie;

Rest an slumber shön 'ill come.

 

Fetlar means 'fertile island' and is known as the 'Garden of Shetland'. Sinclair Shewan, the composer, was for a long time head shepherd to Sir Arthur Nicolson in Fetlar and he is buried there.

I am grateful to Jane Coutts of the Fetlar Museum Trust for aiding me in my search for this song. It appears in the booklet 'Songs and Sights of Shetland' complied by Christine M Guy, published by Shetland Arts Trust, 1995

Glossary:

Peerie - little
Dee - thee, you
Shön - soon
Sall - shall
Ooer be ooer - hour by hour
Dy - thy, your
Boannie - bonnie, lovely
Döne - done
Bide - wait
Muckle yowes - big ewes
Noo dan! - now then
Baetin - beating
Plinkie-plinkie - musical instrument, whistle




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