A Truthful Song

(notes by Donald Mackenzie)


Published in Rewards and Fairies (1910) where it follows “The Wrong Thins”

Notes on the text

[line 6] the Marble Arch:   The Marble Arch is at the crossing of Oxford Street and Edgware Road in central London, a familiar landmark.

[line 18] Lot or Methusalem: patriarchs in Genesis. Notes on the text

[ine 19] Moses (a man I hate): To save his people, Moses brought down the ten Plagues of Egypt, led the Children of Israel out of captivity, and destroyed the Egyptian army in the Red Sea. (Exodus 7-14) No wonder Pharaoh hated him!

[line 29]  Blackwall Basin:   part of the old West India Docks on the Thames in East London.(right).

[line 30] China barque: a three-masted vessel with fore- and mainmasts square-rigged and mizen-mast fore-and-aft-rigged.

[line 35]  sheet … line … brace   Parts of the rigging of a saing vessel.

[line 36]  its lead:  where it led. In effect, its function.

[line 37] caulkyers: To caulk is to stop up the seams of a ship with oakum and pitch.

[line 42] Japhet … Shem … Ham: sons of Noah, the last traditionally the ancestor of the negroid races.

[lines 46]    Otherwise I perceive no change:   Much the same sentiment as in Verse 6 of Poseidon’s Law: [D.H.]

the robust and Brass-bound Man he is not changed at all ! 

[line 48] hooker: applied deprecatively or fondly to a ship.



©Donald Mackenzie 2019 All rights reserved