I must go down to the seas again, to the lonely sea and the sky,
And all I ask is a tall ship and a star to steer her by,
And the wheel’s kick and the wind’s song and the white sail’s shaking,
And a grey mist on the sea’s face, and a grey dawn breaking.
I must down to the seas again, for the call of the running tide
Is a wild call and a clear call that may not be denied;
And all I ask is a windy day with the white clouds flying,
And the flung spray and the blown spume, and the sea-gulls crying.
I must down to the seas again, to the vagrant gypsy life,
To the gull’s way and the whale’s way where the wind’s like a whetted knife;
And all I ask is a merry yarn from a laughing fellow-rover
And quiet sleep and a sweet dream when the long trick’s over.
By John Masefield (1878-1967).
(English Poet Laureate, 1930-1967.)
I must get down to C again, C major or minor, don’t mind
And all I ask is the right key, and the chord that I can’t find.
And the drumstick and the backing vocal’s song and the maraca’s shaking
Before the sell-out crowd will hear my poor voice breaking.
I must get down to C again, or else this piece will end
In a wild cry and deep silence, which I would not recommend.
And all I ask is to modulate with care so I can keep singing,
And the strings’ hum and the flute’s tune and the bells ringing and dinging.
I must get down to C again, to be sure there will be life
After this torment of getting off my key which cuts like a whetted knife.
And all I ask is a big pardon from the laughing audience
And a quiet exit when the theatre tells me to leave the premises.
By Peter Bouchier, amateur singer