3/18/2000

 My sister Muriel sent this poem to me today.  An Elaine Macejak of Evanston, Illinois recently found and posted it.  It was a poem our father and apparently Elaine’s father often recited.  We were never sure it was an accrual poem until now.

  Dad, W.W. Bowen Harden, was born in 1904 and I guess learned it as a child. 

The Dying Fisherman’s Song

‘Twas midnight on the ocean,

Not a streetcar was in sight.

The sun was shining brightly

For it was raining all that night

 

‘Twas a summer’s day in winter,

The rain was snowing fast,

As a barefoot boy with shoes on,

Stood sitting on the grass.

 

‘Twas evening and the rising sun

Was setting in the west;

And all the fishes in the trees

Were cuddled in their nests.

 

The rain was pouring down,

The sun was shining bright,

And everything that you could see

Was hidden out of sight.

 

The organ peeled potatoes,

Lard was rendered by the choir;

When the sexton rang the dishrag,

Someone set the church on fire.

 

“Holy smoke,” the teacher shouted,

As he madly tore his hair.

Now his head resembles heaven,

For there is no parting there.

 A song my dad sang to me and I guess my older brother and sisters as well for as long as I can remember.  He and I spent many hours in the 1950’s as he drove and I rode in an old pick-up truck delivering propane gas tanks to the residences and resorts in the Brainerd, Minnesota Lakes Area.  If there is more to the song I can’t remember the rest.

 A horse and a rig a rig and a horse all ready to go,

Giddy-yup giddy-yup giddy-yup and never say wow,

I don’t care I don’t mind, any old where you go you’ll find a home

Ah ha, hee hee, me too.