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Boat Harbour

by Terra Spencer



Recorded with Dave Gunning in Pictou County in support of the Friends of the Northumberland Strait and the remediation effort at Boat Harbour.


Crack of dawn on a Sunday morning
Fishing poles for father and son
Down to the shoreline of Boat Harbour
Summer of 61

Pots of clams cooking down on the sand
Picking berries that were growing wild
Taste of the saltwater on his hands
When he was a little child

Salt in the air, the Northumberland water
Simple lessons to be learned
He remembers what his father taught him
Back in the days when the tide would turn

Followed his father into pulp and paper
Worked at the mill ‘till the work was done
Never a worry for what was safe
Or where the dirty water would run

After the dam, there was no one fishing
Where all the kids used to swim and play
A poison well full of empty wishes
Big business has a price to pay

Smoke in the air, and foam on the water
The smell of secrets as the dark waves churn
Nobody gave it a second thought
Back in the days when the tide could turn

Two old fishing poles gathering dust
He fed his family salt of earth
Fifty years of broken trust
Now he wonders what a dollar is worth

Change in the air and waste in the water
Too late for lessons to be learned
Leave the damage to our sons and daughters
And wait for the day when the tide will turn


released October 22, 2019
Terra Spencer: music & lyrics, vocals, guitar, accordion
Dave Gunning: harmony vocal, guitar, bass

Engineered by Dave Gunning.




Terra Spencer Windsor, Nova Scotia

Terra Spencer's songs are crafted from autobiographical details woven with gentle instrumentation on piano and guitar. Her recently-released second album Chasing Rabbits is a collection of winter songs about long-distance relationships, wildlife encounters, and the people and places that feel like home. ... more

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