A Deep Sea Chantey

Clarence Michael James Stanislaus Dennis 1876 (Auburn) – 1938 (Melbourne)

We didn't like the bo'sun's mate
(Yo, 'eave ho! an' a bottle o' lemonade or somethin' soft, Miss).
Becos 'is dile filled us wiv 'ate
(Yo, 'eave ho! An' a bottle o' near-beer, or somethin' that's real easy scoffed,
  Miss).
We ain't the crowd for gettin' shick
Becos we've joined the Bolshevik.
An' we reckon Jack's as good as - Hic!
(Schuse me! 'Tain't the likker. I'ah the sense of injush-tish an' wash the right
  thing to be dealt out ter seamen's sorter sent me aloft, Miss).

We didn't like 'is kind o' face
(Yo, 'eave ho! An' a bot'l Soviet Sarsparliler - or anythin' the comrades drink,
  Miss).
Ses 'e, 'Yeh lubbers! Splice mai brace!'
(Yo, 'eave, Hic! . . . . Sheems ter me these Bolsh'vik ..... make yeh skicker'n yeh
  think, Miss).
'E wash a reel two-fisted bloke.
One o' them coves 'oo made a joke
O' swillin' rum - like the ole sea folk.
(You know shailors? - Ole shilly shellbacks - .... - dis'plin - all that short 'er
  ole fash'n talk? Makes the service stink, Miss).
Eh? Wash at, Miss? It's af'er six?
An' yeh won't sherve drinksh?
We've done our tricks?
A'right! (Yo, 'eave ho, for a bot'ler) . . . Blast!
Bill, cut that song! It 'urts! Avast!
She's goin' out?? Hey, jump abroad!
Struth! Nearly missed! 'Eave up! Oh, Lord! . . .

(Later)
Ah! Gimme a ship as a ship should be,
An' a sailor man as loves the sea!
Gimme a sight o' the sheelin' gull,
An' the wash a widenin' aft 'er hull.
An' - 'ere's a sign I'm findin' grace
I LIKES the look o' that bos'un's face!
Ah! Smell them breezes! Come on, Bill!
'Twas longshore dope. We're sailors still!

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Submitted on May 13, 2011

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Clarence Michael James Stanislaus Dennis

Clarence Michael James Stanislaus Dennis, better known as C. J. Dennis, was an Australian poet known for his humorous poems, especially "The Songs of a Sentimental Bloke", published in the early 20th century. Though Dennis's work is less well known today, his 1915 publication of The Sentimental Bloke sold 65,000 copies in its first year, and by 1917 he was the most prosperous poet in Australian history. Together with Banjo Paterson and Henry Lawson, both of whom he had collaborated with, he is often considered among Australia's three most famous poets. While attributed to Lawson by 1911, Dennis later claimed he himself was the 'laureate of the larrikin'. When he died at the age of 61, the Prime Minister of Australia Joseph Lyons suggested he was destined to be remembered as the 'Australian Robert Burns'. more…

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    "A Deep Sea Chantey" Poetry.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2020. Web. 28 Sep. 2020. <https://www.poetry.net/poem/6125/a-deep-sea-chantey>.

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