Original poem
Song of the Brown Sea Rat
by Hamish MacLaren

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The Rodent Mariners

By Hamish Maclaren, Sailor with Banjo, pp. 23-25, 1930
Adapted for singing by Charles Ipcar 1999
Tune adapted from "Blow the Candle Out"

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We are the rodent mariners,
As nobody needs be told,
For there's no mistaking our nautical airs,
Our rolling eyes so bold;
There's never a ship leaves English ground,
From Liverpool Docks to Plymouth Sound,
For Frisco Bay or Bombay bound,
But we have free run of her hold!

We march aboard in companies,
All in the dead of night,
Over the hawsers from the quays
In the shadow of the watch lamplight;
Each roving rat his ship will choose,
From nose to nose we pass the news,
Of cargoes, destinations, crews,
And none can us affright.

Each roving rat his ship will choose,
From nose to nose we pass the news
Of cargoes, destinations, crews,
And none can us affright.

picture of ship crewed by mice - 59434 Bytes
We'll live like kings once we set sail,
Each vessel leaving land,
A wandering larder which entails
A feast for every hand;
Maize, apples, salmon, barley, rice,
Nutmegs, olives, South Sea spice,
Meats and India merchandise,
And all at our command!

We know the ports of all the world
All warehouses, all quays,
All islets, coral-ringed and pearled,
The Blue Hesperides;
And men may search until they die,
And men may blow great fleets sky-high
But rats alone will hold for aye
The Freedom of the Seas!

And men may search until they die,
And men may blow great fleets sky-high
But rats alone will hold for aye
The Freedom of the Seas!

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SONG OF THE BROWN SEA RAT

By Hamish MacLaren, Sailor with Banjo, pp. 23-25, 1930

Now we are the rodent mariners,
As nobody needs be told,
For there's no mistaking our nautical airs,
Our rolling eyes and bold;
And 'tis never a ship leaves English ground
From Liverpool Docks to Plymouth Sound,
For San Francisco or Bombay bound,
But we have the run of her hold!

With a pit-a-pit pat
And a chip chip chip,
'Tis the brown sea rat
That is the captain of the ship!

We go aboard in companies,
Marching at dead of night,
Over the hawsers from the quays
By starlight and lamplight;
Each roving rat his ship will choose,
From nose to nose we pass the news,
Of cargoes, destination, crews,
And naught can us affright.

With a churr churr a-churr
And a quee quee quee,
'Tis the rodent mariner
That is lord of the sea!

Was ever king as sea rat rich?
Each vessel leaving land,
A wandering larder is, in which
Lie feasts on every hand;
Maize, apples, salmon, barley, rice,
Nutmegs, beans, olives, South Sea spice,
Meats, cheeses, India merchandise,
And all at our command!

With a ho ho ho
And a ho once again,
Whatever winds may blow,
We are masters of the main!

We know the ports of all the world
All warehouses, all quays,
All islets coral-ringed and pearled,
The blue Hesperides;
And men may search until they die,
And men may blow great fleets sky-high
But we alone can hold for aye
The Freedom of the Seas!

With a pit-a-pit pat
And a chip chip chip,
'Tis the brown sea rat
That is the captain of the ship!

With a churr churr a-churr
And a quee quee quee,
'Tis the rodent mariner
That is lord of the sea!

With a ho ho ho
And a ho once again,
Whatever winds may blow,
We are masters of the main!

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