When Fortune Turns the Wheel

Louis Killen: On Autumn Harvest ah003: Old Songs & Bothy Ballads: For Friendship and for Harmony. Live from the Fife Traditional Singing Festival May 2005.

A song often printed as a broadside and whose popularity may also have been helped by its inclusion in John Ord's Bothy Songs and Ballads published in 1930 (GD 3: 667; Roud 3798; Ord p180).

1: Come fill the cup, let's drink about, this nicht we'll merry be,
For friendship and for harmony, likewise my comrades three;
Tae meet yince mair some ither nicht my secret joy reveal,
For I now maun stray so far away til fortune turns the wheel.

2: Oh nae love nor gowd nor dress I'll take my estimate of man,
'Tis when I meet a friend in need to stretch a helping hand;
To him I'll drink, for him I'll fecht, to him my mind reveal,
And friends we'll be, whatever way blind fortune turns the wheel.

3: Oh but it's some of my pretended friends, if friends ye may them call,
They falsely turned their back on me when mine was at the wall;
Yet in a glass I'll drink their health, ye'll ken I wish them weel,
That someday I may pay the debt when fortune turns the wheel.

4: And it's of a lovely lassie, aye, it's her I'll justly blame,
When dark misfortune frowned on me she denied she knew my name;
But friendship by remorse has passed, to her I'll never kneel,
I'll sweetherts find, baith true and kind, when fortune turns the wheel.

5: O ye dewy hill o Caledon, likewise sweet Coquetdale,
Whaur friendship binds the firmest ties and love tells the sweetest tale;
Here's tae ma friends and tae ma foes, ye'll ken I wish them weel,
That we all may meet some ither nicht when fortune turns the wheel.
c p 2006 Autumn Harvest