Notes

Original poem
by C. Fox Smith

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MP3 Sample

Leave Her Johnnie (CFS)

Poem by C. Fox Smith
From RHYMES OF THE RED ENSIGN, edited by Cicely Fox Smith,
published by Hodder and Stoghton, 1919, pp. 31
As sung by Bob Zentz on CLOSE HAULED ON THE WIND OF A DREAM, 2004
Tune: traditional sea shanty "Leave Her Johnny"

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A hundred miles from the Longship's Light,
Leave her, Johnnie, leave her!
She's blowin' up for a dirty night
An' it's time for us to leave her!

Chorus:
Oh, leave her, Johnnie, leave her,
Oh, leave her, Johnnie, leave her,
For the voyage is done and the winds don't blow,
An' it's time for us to leave her!

She's down by the head an' settlin' fast
Leave her, Johnnie, leave her!
Her name an' number's up at last,
An' it's time for us to leave her!

Chorus

Now it isn't the sea she sailed so long:
Leave her, Johnnie, leave her!
It isn't the wind that's used her wrong,
But it's time for us to leave her!

Chorus

We've pumped her out with a right good will,
Leave her, Johnnie, leave her!
A day an' a night an' she's sinkin' still,
An' it's time for us to leave her!

Chorus

She's smashed above an' stove below,
Leave her, Johnnie, leave her!
Now there's nothing to do but roll an' go,
For it's time for us to leave her!

Chorus

A hundred miles from the Longship's Light
Leave her, Johnnie, leave her!
She's blowin' up for a dirty night
An' it's time for us to leave her!

Chorus

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Notes from Bob Zentz:

Longships Light is 2 miles west of the coast of Cornwall-near Lands End & Penzance, and the irony is, 'Leave Her' will be this voyage's final chantey...they're evidently a bunch of ol' Square-rigger Sailors, using this old song to keep the pumps goin', but She's just not gonna make it. 'Down at the head' would certainly make it seem like a mine, as most torpedoes were targeted amidships.

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Leave Her Johnnie

Original poem by Cicely Fox Smith,
From RHYMES OF THE RED ENSIGN, edited by Cicely Fox Smith,
pub. by Hodder and Stoghton 1919, p. 31

A hundred miles from the Longships light-
Leave her, Johnnie, leave her !-
And blowing up for a dirty night-
And it's time for us to leave her!

Down by the head and settling fast-
Her name and number's up at last,
And it's time for us to leave her!

It isn't the sea she's sailed so long:
It isn't the wind that's used her wrong,
But it's time for us to leave her!

We've pumped her out with a right good will,
A day and a night, and she's sinking still,
And it's time for us to leave her!

She's smashed above and she's stove below,
And there's nothing to do but roll and go,
For it's time for us to leave her!

A hundred miles from the Longships light-
Leave her, Johnnie, leave her!-
And blowing up for a dirty night-
It's time for us to leave her!

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