Full Fathom Five

Cantata by Shena Eleanor Fraser (1910 - 1993)

Word count: 367

?. My Boy John [sung text not yet checked]

"Ho, sailor of the sea!
How's my Boy, my Boy?"
"What's your boy's name?   Good wife !
And in what good ship sail'd he?"

"My boy, John!
He that went to sea ---
What care I for the ship?   Sailor !
My boy's my boy to me.
 
"You come back from sea,
And not know my John?
I might as well have ask'd some landsman
Yonder down in the town.
There's not an ass in all the parish,
But he knows my John.

"How's my boy, my boy?
And unless you let me know,
I'll swear you are no sailor,
Blue jacket or no, ---
Brass buttons or no, sailor !
Anchor and crown or no.
Sure his ship was the Jolly Briton ! "
--- "Speak low, woman !   Speak low ! "

"And why should I speak low, sailor !
About my own boy John?
If I was loud as I am proud,
I'd sing him over the town:
Why should I speak low?   Sailor ! "

--- "That good ship went down."
 
"How's my boy?   How's my boy?
What care I for the ship?   Sailor !
I was never aboard her:
Be she afloat or be she aground,
Sinking or swimming, I'll be bound
Her owners can afford her.
I say, how's my John?"

--- "Every man on board went down, ---
Every man aboard her."

"How's my boy, my boy?
What care I for the men?   Sailor!
I'm not their mother.
How's my boy, my boy?
Tell me of him, and no other !
How's my boy, my boy?"

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Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

?. To sea [sung text not yet checked]

To sea, to sea! The calm is o'er;
  The wanton water leaps in sport,
And rattles down the pebbly shore;
  The dolphin wheels, the sea-cows snort,
And unseen Mermaids' pearly song
Comes bubbling up, the weeds among.
  Fling broad the sail, dip deep the oar:
  To sea, to sea! the calm is o'er.
 
To sea, to sea! our wide-wing'd bark
  Shall billowy cleave its sunny way,
And with its shadow, fleet and dark,
  Break the cav'd Tritons' azure day,
Like mighty eagle soaring light
O'er antelopes on Alpine height.
  The anchor heaves, the ship swings free,
  The sails swell full. To sea, to sea!

Authorship

See other settings of this text.

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]