On the Level by Ian H Bruce (2007) On our journey through life, there is pleasure and strife Fresh challenges for us each day Like a voyage on a boat, we must all stay afloat Whatever fate flings in our way Chorus : When your journey’s been tough, there’s temptation enough To dance to the tunes of the devil But with boat beneath feet, all your problems retreat When you float with your friends on the level Mac’s depth can deceive, round obstructions we weave Being grounded can cause much displeasure But with comrades who'll tow from a watery plateau We delight as each turn reveals treasure Up the cruel Cheshire flight, you may pity our plight Each lock-gate a potential impasse Every paddle seems stuck, so we curse our bad luck And give thanks for good friends and their windlass If your lamp starts to fade in the Harecastle shade You just hope that the tunnel’s not haunted If you follow their light, with your friends you’ll unite And emerge from the darkness undaunted So now don’t drift along, heed the words of this song Guide life’s tiller with a firm steady hand Always journey with friends through the cuts, locks and bends 'Til together we set feet on dry land Dedicated to those members of a cruising club who have not lost sight of the fact that boating should be a pleasurable activity, particularly when experienced in the company of others. 'On the Level' is the title of a book about the 'History and Development of the Upper Levels of the Macclesfield and Peak Forest Canals' written by Dennis Suleman. Dennis was a prominent member of the IWA in the north-west of England and of the North Cheshire Cruising Club.
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