The Ballad Of St.Anne's Reel

Words and Music by David Mallett
from Autograph (1980)

He was stranded in some tiny town
     G                D
On fair Prince Edward Isle
Awaitin' for a ship to come and find him
  G                     A                            
A one-horse place, a friendly face
      D            G
Some coffee and a tiny trace
    D               A              D
Of fiddlin' in the distance far behind him

A dime across the counter then
    G            D
A shy hello, a brand new friend
A walk along the street in the wintry weather
   G               A
A yellow light, an open door
       D                       G
And a welcome friend, there's room for more
      D                     A             D
And then they're standing there inside together

    He said I've heard that tune before somewhere
           G               D
    But I can't remember when
    Was it on some other friendly shore
              G              Bm
    Or did I hear it on the wind  
             D              A                         
    Was it written on the sky above 
               G                D  
    I think I heard it from someone I loved
           G              A            D                               
    But I never heard it sound so sweet since then

D  G  D  G  A7  D  Em  A7  D  Em  A7  D

Now his feet begin to tap   
   G                    D
A little boy says I'll take your hat
He's caught up in the magic of her smile
     G                A
And leap the heart inside him went
    D                G
And off across the floor he sent
      D           A             D
His clumsy body graceful as a child

    He said there's magic in the fiddler's arm
             G             D
    There's magic in this town
    There's magic in the dancers' feet
             G                 Bm
    And the way they put them down
     D               A
    People smilin' everywhere
     G                  D
    Boots and ribbons, locks of hair
          G                    A                D
    And laughter and old blue suits and Easter gowns

D  G  D  G  A7  D  Em  A7  D  Em  A7  D

Now the sailor's gone, the room is bare
  G              D
The old piano's settin' there
Someone's hat's left hanging on the rack
    G                  A
And empty chairs, the wooden floor
      D                   G
That feels the touch of shoes no more
  D               A               D
Awaitin' for the dancers to come back

    And the fiddle's in the closet
             G               D
    Of some daughter of the town
    The strings are broke and the bow is gone
             G                Bm
    And the cover's buttoned down
         D              A
    But sometimes on December nights
             G                    D
    When the air is cold and the wind is right
               G           A                   D
    There's a melody that passes through this town
D  G  D  G  A7  D  G  D  G  A7  D  
Em  A7  D  Em  A7  D  Em  A7  D  Em  A7  D