Over the Ocean: Audio, Lyrics, Back Story

Title art imageBy mid-October the Great Retail Stores are already beaming same ol' same ol' Holiday Songs at their patrons' brains. Here's a salty alternative to one of the first such songs they zap you with each season. The melody is by an "unknown composer" in the 1800s, set to the 1844 poem "The New-England Boy's Song about Thanksgiving Day" by Lydia Maria Child (Wikipedia).

Better known today as "Over the River and Through the Wood", the song has entered the realm of traditional folk music. It is typically sung by modern-day Americans in celebration of a huge mistake on the part of certain Native Americans in helping foreign migrant refugees to settle on their shores. That didn't turn out well for them... perhaps the reason such things are not encouraged nowadays.

This whole thing is probably another mistake. I can only plead November at 59.56 N. latitude, and brain-warp from exposure to the huge cargoes of shite shipped out of Washington DC ever since I can remember, and going thru an exceptionally prolific period right now.


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Original Song Lyrics

(To the tune of “Over the River and Through the Woods”)

Title art imageOver the ocean, fighting the gales
Outbound for Borneo
With a cargo of shite our ship she ain’t light
She wallers in the troughs and goes slow!
They works us like mules
‘Cause we was such fools
As to sign on this nasty old tub
With a captain who’s daft about chicken-on-a-raft
And it's all the cook gives us fer grub

Over the ocean draggin’ our tail
Beating towards Borneo
The stars may be bright but our ship smells of shite
No matter how hard the winds blow
When at last we gets in we'll all stink like Sin
No lass will come near us we know
We’ll just fight and drink, get tossed in the clink
Pay the fine, and then back home we’ ll go

Over the ocean, we waft on the breeze
Bound homeward from Borneo
With a cargo of liquor
We’ll get there much quicker
‘Cause we’ll lighten the ship as we go
We’ll run her to port and have one last snort
Find some ladies and spend all our pay
Then we’ll find us a ship
And sign on for a trip
And once more we’ll get under way.

Over the ocean and thru the storms
Now bound for Mexico
Another cargo of shite
If we’d not got so tight
We’d never have signed on don’t you know
But sailors are we, rugged men of the sea
To grandmother’s house we don’t go
She don’t want us there
It must be our air
Of shite shipped to far Borneo

No she don’t want us there
Oh It must be our air
Of shite shipped to far Borneo


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Copyright © 2019 Robert Palomo