McKeon's Coming

© 1985 Gordon Bok , BMI


The story goes that McKeon was a fisherman from Canada.  Had a little schooner; ran it with his son or another man.  Back during Prohibition, the lucrative trade of smuggling booze into the States attracted many people, and McKeon was one.  Unfortunately, he got caught, his schooner was impounded and sold at auction, and he was thrown in jail in Massachusetts.  When he got out years later, his health was ruined, and it took him almost two years to work his way back home. 


Now when the wind is bright with the spring and the snow has gone away

The days grow long and the time has come to hoist my sail and go

And I'll hear no more your dungeon door, nor eat your bitter beans

Surely it's a long and a hungry road 'til McKeon's home again.


I'll go down by the Naskeag sound where the tide runs fast and strong

The water's deep and the hills are steep and the nights are cold and long,

And through the rocks of Jericho I'll wind my weary way

And roll her off for Sable, aye, and the grey seals of Fundy.


For the wind is fair and the tide's at the spring and the time has come to go

Hoist my sail on a Northern wind and I'll be on my way.

Ah, but there's no one to go with me and there's no one at my side

Surely it's a long and a lonely road for the Straits of Canso.




McKeon's Coming is recorded on the album North Winds Clearing, the Bok, Muir, & Trickett album First Fifteen Years Vol II, and is also in the songbook One to Sing, One to Haul.