Sunday, May 11, 2014

Sunday Poetry - Soldiers & Sailors

Moving on from WWI to folk song. Not really poetry, I suppose, but this new anthology of English folk song is full of lovely stories so I'll be choosing a song or two from each of the themed chapters over the next few weeks. The first chapters is about soldiers & sailors, so it's a link from the last anthology to this one, Faithful Sailor Boy.

It was a stormy winter's night, the snow laid on the ground.
The sailor boy stood on the quay, his ship was outward bound.
His sweetheart standing by his side shed many a silent tear,
And as he pressed her to his breast, he whispered in her ear:

Chorus:
    Farewell, farewell my own true love
    This parting gives me pain.
    I'll be your own true guiding star,
    When I return again.
    My thoughts shall be of you, of you,
    When the storms are raging high.
    So fare ye well, remember me,
    Your faithful sailor boy.


Without a gale the ship set sail, he kissed his love goodbye.
She watched the craft till out of sight, and a tear bedimmed her eye.
She prayed for him in Heaven above to guide him on his way.
His last and loving words that night re-echoed o'er the bay.


Chorus:
    Farewell, farewell my own true love
    This parting gives me pain.
    I'll be your own true guiding star,
    When I return again.
    My thoughts shall be of you, of you,
    When the storms are raging high.
    So fare ye well, remember me,
    Your faithful sailor boy.


But sad to say the ship returned without her sailor boy;
He died whilst on the voyage back, the flag t'was half-mast high.
And when his comrades came on shore they told her he was dead
A letter he had sent to her, and the last line sadly read:

Final Chorus:
    Farewell farewell my own true love,
    On earth we meet no more.
    I soon shall be from storm and sea
    On that eternal shore.
    I hope to meet you in that land,
    That land beyond the sky,
    Where you shall not be parted from
    Your faithful sailor boy.

4 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. Isn't the cover gorgeous? I love woodcuts.

      Delete
  2. I discovered this site which contains a print of the original picture :0)
    http://www.gerrishfineart.com/browse.asp?types=Tunnicliffe%2C+C.+F.+(1901-79)+Memorial+Collection+Part+One&reset=1

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you. I've seen his work in other books. The detail is so fine, he was very talented & a great observer of nature.

      Delete