Verse > Rudyard Kipling > Verse: 1885–1918
Rudyard Kipling (1865–1936).  Verse: 1885–1918.  1922.
The Lowestoft Boat
(East Coast Patrols)


IN Lowestoft a boat was laid,
    Mark well what I do say!
And she was built for the herring trade,
    But she has gone a-rovin’, a-rovin’, a-rovin’,
    The Lord knows where!        5
They gave her Government coal to burn,
And a Q. F. gun at bow and stern,
And sent her out a-rovin’, etc.
Her skipper was mate of a bucko ship
Which always killed one man per trip,        10
So he is used to rovin’, etc.
Her mate was skipper of a chapel in Wales,
And so he fights in topper and tails—
Religi-ous tho’ rovin’, etc.
Her engineer is fifty-eight,        15
So he’s prepared to meet his fate,
Which ain’t unlikely rovin’, etc.
Her leading-stoker’s seventeen,
So he don’t know what the Judgments mean,
Unless he cops ’em rovin’, etc.        20
Her cook was chef in the Lost Dogs’ Home,
    Mark well what I do say!
And I’m sorry for Fritz when they all come
  A-rovin’, a-rovin’, a-roarin’ and a-rovin’,
  Round the North Sea rovin’,        25
  The Lord knows where!

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