A Skipper in the Mercantile Marine
I'm the skipper of a monkey barge what horses has to drag,
But a penny steamer man's insulted me,
And the next time as I see's him I shall hoist the pirate flag,
And a proper naval battle there will be,
Whilst I was on a decent trip it took me quite a day,
He goes and captivates my Sunday girl,
She's wrote a sneering letter as she wants no more to say,
To a person of the common low canal.
And she fancies he's the captain of a line-of-battle ship,
But from London Bridge to Chelsea is about his longest trip,
It's his uniform what's done it but she must be precious green,
To go and lose a skipper in the mercantile marine.
Now she might if she'd 'ave married me sailed over all the land,
And a change of air you know has good effects,
If the Surrey sun was scorching and the heat she couldn't stand,
We'd have got a bracing wind in Middlesex,
And when storms they was a-raging she'd have had no cause to fret,
And I know of her complexion she is fond,
For it's through my dirty cargo that my skin is so brunette,
For on Sunday when I'm washed I'm quite a blond.
And yet she talks about her admiral her sailor boy in blue,
On a penny paddle-boat he doesn't get a screw,
And I reckon she'll be sorry when his wages she has seen,
As she didn't have the skipper in the mercantile marine.
Now she'd have picked the dandelions in some picturesque vale,
While our Waddles that's our gee-gee had his meal,
She'd have watched the pretty bullock wagging of his ox's tail,
And the little moo's with calves-heads made of veal,
And in our little state-room as we glided gently by,
She might have washed the kettles and the pots,
And when she done the washing she'd have hung it out to dry,
It'd look just like the sails of racing yachts.
And she thinks his ships a cruiser on the latest fighting plan,
But I've seen a better funnel on a baked potato can,
And when she has to swill the decks and keep the windows clean,
She'll wish she'd had the skipper in the mercantile marine.
He's done her out of all the lovely sights along the stream,
The brick fields and the lime kilns all in rows,
She'll never see a shepherd boy awaking from his dream,
When the Hornet gets a bullseye off his nose,
He took a mean advantage when he robbed me of my girl,
But sweet revenge I'm hoping will be dealt,
And the next time as he has the sauce to come down our canal,
I shall ram his penny barge below the belt.
And yet she says his vessels faster than the famous white star line,
But I'd back my barge to beat it if my horse had some quinine,
And when his boilers busted and he's blown to smithereens,
She'll be glad to have the skipper in the mercantile marine.
Recorded by Comsotheka