Cicely Fox Smith

(1 February 1882 – 8 April 1954 / Lymm, Cheshire)

Mobile Bay - Poem by Cicely Fox Smith

There's a song has gone through my mind all day,
As a song will sometimes do;
It takes me back to the years of youth
And the men and the ways I knew -
To the men I knew in a time that's gone
And a ship of old renown,
When I sailed on a day to Mobile Bay,
Where they roll the cotton down!

I remember the feel of the noonday sun
And the warm wet Indian smells -
Rum and sugar, niggers and mud,
And the dear Lord knows what else:
The shuffle and stamp of the naked feet
On the levees once again:
They all come back from the years that were
To the sound of that old refrain.

'Roll the cotton down, bullies,
Roll the cotton down!'
I am far away from the dingy street
And the drab grey Northern town:
I remember the yarns my shipmates spun
And the great old songs we sung,
The way of a ship at a twelve-knot clip
In the years when the world was young.

It's the width of a world from here, worse luck,
It's the half of my life since then,
And it's ill to tread, so I've heard said,
A trail you've left again;
And I may sail east, or I may sail west,
Where the folks are yellow or brown,
But I'll sail no more to Mobile Bay
Where they roll the cotton down.

Comments about Mobile Bay by Cicely Fox Smith

There is no comment submitted by members..

Read this poem in other languages

This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.

I would like to translate this poem »

word flags

What do you think this poem is about?

Poem Submitted: Monday, August 30, 2010

[Report Error]