The Dock Urchinís Chant

by Kevin Andrew Murphy

First Song

Kettle singing, tempest brewing,
storm-wife calls the winds to bind.
Buy her cords—with their undoing
watch the twisting winds unwind.
Loose the first, the sailorís friend,
sweet Zephyrus from the west.
Second knot, the sultry south wind,
Notus, wilder, yet still blessed.
Loose the third, youíre calling forth
accursed Eurus from the east.
Loose the fourth and from the north
comes Boreas the winter beast.
Loose them all, the tempest blows you
off to Hell or Araby,
off to lands where no one knows you.
Free the winds and ride the sea.

Second Song

Flotsam, jetsam, mermaidís mantle.
Put the kettle on to boil.
Knot the nets, the storm-wifeís cantíll
spell the tempest to our toil.
Kettle crying like a maiden.
Cord to catch the zephyrís tail.
Merchant galleys, overladen,
purchase four fair winds and sail.
Knots undone, the stormwinds shrieking
curse both honest man and thief.
Pray and bail, four vessels leaking,
caught upon the devilís reef.
Souls in cages underwater,
far from compass, star or chart.
Who can net the sea kingís daughter?
Who can break the devilís heart?

ďThe Dock Urchinsí ChantĒ was previously published by World Works.


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