Cicely Fox Smith

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

Ships And Folks - Poem by Cicely Fox Smith

'Ships are like folks,' said Murphy, 'the way there's good an' bad
An' weak an' strong among 'em, an' steady ones an' mad,
The way they're wild an' willing, an' kind an' cruel too,
The way there's fair an false ones, an' homely ones an' true.'

'Ships are like folks,' said Murphy, 'the way a man can't tell
What makes him fancy one so, an' hate the next like hell,
Why some that treat him handsome he counts no more'n the rest,
An' them that use him hardest, it's them he'll like the best.'

'Ships are like folks,' said Murphy, 'the way they come an' go,
An' some you'll sail for years with an' never seem to know . . .
An' some you'll sign just once with, an' part, an' there's an end . . .
An' some you'll first clap eyes on an' know you've found a friend.'

'Ships are like folks,' said Murphy, 'in every kind o' way -
The way us fellers leave 'em that's knowed 'em in their day -
The way we'll chuck the best ones an' choose the worst instead -
An' curse 'em when they're livin' - an' miss 'em when they're dead.'


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Poem Submitted: Monday, August 30, 2010



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