The Seven Seas
and Further Barrack-Room Ballads






[Dec 19th 2012]


The poems are listed by first line; click here for a listing by title.

Title First line Notes

The Answer
A Rose, in tatters on the garden path

Bill 'Awkins
'As anybody seen Bill 'Awkins?"
Soldier an' Sailor too' As I was spittin' into the Ditch aboard o' the Crocodile
The Rhyme of the Three Sealers Away by the lands of the Japanee
The Flowers Buy my English posies!
The Sergeant's Weddin' E was warned agin 'er-
A Song of the English Fair is our lot - O goodly is our heritage!

The King
Farewell Romance!' the Cave-men said;
The Three-Decker Full thirty foot she towered from waterline to rail
The Song of the Dead Hear now the Song of the Dead - in the North by the torn berg-edges
Anchor Song Heh! Walk her round. Heave, ah, heave her short again!

The Miracles
I sent a message to my dear
The Derelict I was the staunchest of our fleet
An American If the Led Striker call it a strike
Back to the Army again' I'm 'ere in a lousy ulster and a broken billycock 'at
In the Neolithic Age In the Neolithic Age savage warfare did I wage
That Day It got beyond all orders an' it got beyond all 'ope;
The ' Mary Gloster' I've paid for your sickest fancies; I've humoured your crackedest whim
The Ladies I've taken my fun where I've found it

The Merchantmen
King Solomon drew merchantmen
M'Andrew's Hymn Lord, Thou hast made this world below the shadow of a dream
Birds of Prey' March March! The mud is cakin' good about our trousies
The First Chantey Mine was the woman to me, darkling I found her:
The Story of Ung Once, on a glittering ice-field, ages and ages ago
The Song of the Sons One from the ends of the earth - gifts at an open door-
The Coastwise Lights Our brows are bound with spindrift and the weed is on our knees;
The Song of the Cities Royal and Dower-royal, I the Queen
The Shut-eye Sentry Sez the Junior Orderly Sergeant
Sestina of the Tramp-Royal Speakin' in general, I 'ave tried 'em all-
Dedication (to The Seven Seas) The cities are full of pride

Hymn before Action
The earth is full of anger
The ' Eathen The 'eathen in 'is blindness bows down to wood an' stone
Mulholland's Contract The fear was on the cattle, for the gale was on the sea,
For to admire The Injian Ocean sets an' smiles
The Last Rhyme of True Thomas The King has called for priest and cup
The Liner she's a lady The Liner she's a lady, an' she never looks nor 'eeds-
'The Men that fought at Minden' The men that fought at Minden, they was rookies in their time
The Deep Sea Cables The wrecks dissolve above us; their dust drops down from afar-
The Sea Wife There dwells a wife by the Northern Gate
Follow me 'ome' There was no one like 'im, 'Orse or Foot
The Mother Lodge There was Rundle, Station Master

The Lost Legion
There's a Legion that never was 'listed
The Jacket Through the Plagues of Egyp' we was chasin' Arabi
The Last Chantey Thus said the Lord in the Vault above the Cherubim

To the True Romance. (Prelude to Many Inventions)
Thy face is far from this our war
England's Answer Truly ye come of The Blood; slower to bless than to ban

The Native Born
We've drunk to the Queen - God bless her!
Cholera Camp We've got the cholerer in camp - it's worse than forty fights;
L'Envoi (to The Seven Seas) When earth's last picture is painted
Sappers When the Waters were dried an' the Earth did appear

Mary, Pity Women!'
You call yourself a man
The Song of the Banjo You couldn't pack a Broadwood half a mile-