Cicely Fox Smith

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

The Last Ship - Poem by Cicely Fox Smith

W'en the floods come down an' the
was new -
To me way-ay-i-oh!
An' Cap'n Noah signed on 'is crew -
It's a long time ago.
An' Solomon's ships come wallerin' back
With 'olds full of ivory, w'ite an' black,
An' gold as well an' a monkey or two
An' fancy birds for the Palestine Zoo,
I don't jus' know nor I don't much care
Wot sort of a crowd them 'Ebrews were,
The kind o' long splices aboard them craft,
Or if they was square-rig or fore-an'-aft,
But there's jus' one thing as it's easy to say,

You bet there was someone as talked - this - way: -

'Oh, you orter 'ave seen my las' ship,
You orter 'ave seen 'er go,
Best old 'ooker ever I've struck
An' the best as ever I'll know!
You orter 'ave scoffed the grub we got,
The bread was fresh an' the coffee was 'ot,
The scouse
scouse an' the duff
Nor the junk warn't out o' the or'nary tough,
An' the skipper an' mates was the real old kind,
An' the fo'c'sle crowd was the best you could find -
That was the way in my las' ship - my ol' ship - the bes' ship -
Which it ain't in this 'ere ol' scow,
An' I'd give the 'arf o' my nine months' pay
To be back in that ol' ship now!'

An' ever since then, both near an' far -
To me way-ay-i-oh!
From Sydney 'Eads to Astoria Bar -
It's a long time ago!
There ain't a ship as 'as gone to sea
With coal or copra or cotton or tea,
Things as smell nasty an' things as smell nice,
Cloves an' guano, blubber an' spice;
Queer old 'ookers of rum old rigs,
Yankee clippers an' coaly brigs,
Liner an' freighter, tramp an' tanker,
From the Skagerrack to the Straits o' Banka,
There ain't been a ship 'as sailed the seas,

But someone's been here as said words - like - these; -

'Oh, you orter 'ave seen my las' ship,
For she was the gal to go,
Round ol' Cape Stiff in a 'undred days
From Cali-for-ni-o!
She was a picter, she was a ship,
Fifteen knots was 'er usual clip,
None o' your bloomin' nines an' such,
The same as we do in this ol' Dutch;
You orter 'ave seen
carryin' sail,
W'en the eighteen knot was over the rail,
Oh, she was a beauty, my las' ship - my ol' ship - my bes' ship -
A flier from stern to bow,
An' I'd give the 'arf o' my pay, God's truth,
To be back in that ol' ship now!'

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Poem Submitted: Tuesday, August 31, 2010

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