Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, THE CARPENTER'S STORY, by ARCHIE BINNS

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Classic and Contemporary Poetry

THE CARPENTER'S STORY, by                
First Line: Well,' said chips, 'I was once in a barquentine'
Last Line: "you can't please a sailor no ways!'"
Subject(s): Carpenters; Sailing & Sailors; Seamen; Sails

"Well," said Chips, "I was once in a barquentine,
Where the captain had his wife along.
The men all growled about the chow,
But only out of habit --
For nothing was really the matter with it.
This skipper's wife had a crusty temper
And it made her hot to hear the complaining.

"Christmas came. And the woman declared that for once
We would have a meal that we couldn't object to.
She planned a wonderful dinner and cooked it all herself.
We were somewhere off the Azores then.
I remember that dinner yet.
Everyone ate without saying much, until Long Jim,
When he couldn't eat any more,
Filled his pipe and got up, stretching himself.
'Now, that was a fine dinner,' he said.
'And if I could just have the skipper's wife
I wouldn't ask for anything more.'
Just as it happened, the skipper's wife
Was coming for'ard to hear how the sailors liked the chow.
And just as Jim spoke, she put her head into the fo'c'sle and said:
'Be damned if you would.
You can't please a sailor no ways!'"

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