written by Ashley Sterne Sam Small were fishing in canal 'Twixt Manchester and Sale; He hadn't had a bite all day And nought to sup but ale. Then all at once his fishing line Went rushing out like mad; 'By gum,' cried Sam, 'I've got a bite,' So by gum he 'ad. He tugged and tugged and better tugged His line it rose and sank; Then fish gave one last dying gasp And dropped stone dead on t'bank. Then a policeman bustled up On feet both large and flat. He looked at Sam, he looked at fish And said,"Ee, who done that?' "It's just a sort of fish," said Sam "I'm taking home to tea." "Tha's not", said policeman. "That tha's not, It don't belong to thee. "It's what they call a Sturgeon, Sam, That fish belongs to King, So take it up the Palace, lad, As fast as anything." Sam stooped and picked the Sturgeon up Well knowing who was boss; And ran to station where he bought Two tickets for King's Cross, When Sam reached London Town The crowd all raised a cheering cry; The traffic parted left and right To let that Sturgeon by. The Palace sentry, haughty like, Said, "What might be your wish?" But when he saw what Sam had brought He cried, "Pass, Royal fish." Sam knocked at door and servant girl Said, "Step inside the hall, The King and Queen is out," says she, But not for thee, Sam Small." And so with Sturgeon in his arms Sam tramped up corridor, He trailed along some passages And knocked at parlour door. "Come in," says King, So Sam went in With Royal fish and all. "Why dash me buttons," cries the King "If it isn't old Sam Small." "That's me," said Sam, "and 'ere's a fish Our policeman said were thine; A Sturgeon caught in Ship Canal With rod and hook and line." 'Well, well,' said King, 'come sit thee down, Tha' must be fair done up. We just were going to have us teas, Tha'll stay and have a cup?" "Thanks, King," said Sam and takes a seat With fish upon his knee. "Nay, put that thing on sofa, Sam," Says King, "And have thy tea." "Now what about this fish?" asks Sam, But King he whispers low, "I'm going to tell thee something, Sam, But don't let policeman know. "I hate to show ingratitude And please don't think me mean, But I never did like Sturgeon, Sam, Nor, come to that, does Queen. "To eat the stuff we hate so much Well, Sam, we find it hard; So we hand 'em to the Chamberlain Who stacks them in back yard. "Just thee look out that window, Sam, And see where t'Sturgeons go." Sam looked at yard and saw 'e'm all In thousands in a row. "It's champion seeing thee again, But Sam twixt me and thee I can't stand Sturgeons But I love a kipper to me tea." "Now fancy that," says Sam, "by gum, Why them's my favourite fish." And then the Queen came smiling in, With kippers on the dish. "Do you know Sam Small, my dear?" says King. Queen says 'Why, yes, yes, yes, Just touch the bell and tell our James To bring more watercress." "Think on," says King when tea were done And Sam got up to go, "Kippers is what I like for tea But don't let policeman know." So Sam went home to Lancashire And said a silent prayer, With blessings on the kippered fish "Long live the Royal Pair."
The end