The following poem was authored by my grandmother's brother Bramwell Quinton of Charleston, and sent to me by Neal Tremblett. It was printed in The Clarenville Packet, page 19, on November 13, 1980.

Hunting Potheads Whales

It's a long time ago when first men did go
Out on the ocean no fear did they know
It was so exciting these monsters to kill
Herding eight hundred whales could be quite a thrill.

To kill these great monsters you may well believe
They used every weapon the mind could conceive
Old swords and old lances mostly used in that day
But a ball from a musket usually put them away.

On many occasions men got tossed in the sea
On the back of whale.  What a ride that could be
You may talk about Texas and the Calgary Stampeede
But riding bare-back a pothead, it sure took the lead.

A whale's dying pain was a sight to behold
Many narrow escapes they have often been told
A boat turned to matchwood with a blow of its tail
The loss of his boat many a man would bewail.

In this modern age it sure would look queer
To see how these fishermen, regardless of fear
Would attack these leviathans theirs lives for to take
Not thinking of danger, but what money they'd make.

The weapons they used in them days were so crude
But this did not daunt them, they were all in the mood
To slaughter them potheads, it was their intent
To scalp the fat from, to this task they were sent.

In them days of depression not much money around
To earn a few dollars every means must be found
It was surely a God-send in them days long ago
What a blessing them potheads for some folks did know.

Many years have passed by, since I was a lad
Men would drive in them potheads, then I would be glad
For the noise and commotion would be quite a thrill
It would frighten old Satan to hear the men yell.

But time passes on, them days they are gone
Now the whales unmolested can bask in the sun
For the law now prohibits the whales for to take
Now man finds other methods a living to make!

[Home] [Mail]

Last Modified: Saturday, 19-Jun-1999 19:13:22 NDT