The name’s Dan O’Brien and I won’t be lyin’
If I say I’ve seen a thing or two.
I’ve sailed more than most from coast to coast,
From the China Sea to Timbuktu.
I’ve braved many a gale on back of a whale,
Sent many a fool to Davy’s Locker;
Cut sails from the gizzards o’ giant lizards
And still I ain’t ready for a rocker.
I’ve kissed native girls with coral for curls
And bodies like burnished ivory.
Then after my pleasures I plunder their treasures
With whiskey and wiles and connivery.
I take their gold to have and to hold
And leave ’em to sob in their huts.
I’ve nothin’ to do with ’em when I’m through with ’em —
The Devil take the heathen sluts!
But in all the years passed before the mast
I never yet knew a creature
As could make me squeal or turn on my heel
And holler for a preacher,
Unless you’re exceptin’ that beast of deception
With a smell like pickled pig’s foot,
That hairy mound who howled like a hound
The fearful name o’ — Bigfoot!
My leaking bark was the Crippled Shark,
My crew was two score and ten;
Recruited from middens and debtors’ prisons
To a man they were desperate men.
We hoisted our ales and lowered the sails
And pointed her into the sun,
Then to celebrate this affair of state
Fired the cook from the forward gun.
The sea was clear as a maiden’s mirror,
The sky was blue as a vein;
We were three days south when the weather gave out
And began the cursed rain.
It hailed cats and dogs and poisonous frogs
Till we thought we were Noah’s Ark.
Then the mainmast split when the lightning spit
And crippled the Crippled Shark.
We were tossed and torn around the Horn,
All the while the deck was burning,
But I swore allegiance to the regions
From which there’s no returning.
When the hurricane ceased and gave us peace
We all of us made crosses,
Then dropped a rope near the Cape o’ No Hope
To ascertain our losses:
One bosun burned, or so I learned
When I breathed in half his ashes;
The first mate hid ‘neath a lifeboat lid
Till I gave him forty lashes.
The cabin boy had been thrown like a toy
Behind the fo’c’s’le ladder
And there he stayed while the thunder played
And he lost control of his bladder.
“Press on!” says I. “We’ll do or we’ll die,
And woe to them that disobey.
The first to utter a cowardly mutter
Will be the first to lose his toupee!”
Though my crew of fifty were yellow and shifty
And wouldn’t stand my scrutiny,
I settled their hash with musket and lash
Till they planned a murderous mutiny.
They brought me a broth of boiled sloth
To make me sleep like a gypsy;
Then the second mate took a silver plate
And bashed me until I was tipsy.
They set me adrift in a scurvy skiff
With my noggin nailed to the floor
And said, “Roses are red, but dead is dead
And we’ll never see you no more.”
The tropical air baked me medium rare,
To the four winds I was a slave;
And while I was waitin’ I prayed to Satan
To take my crew to the grave.
For days without number I had no slumber
Nor food, nor drink to tide me by,
And should things get dull a passing gull
Would make a pass at my one good eye.
By luck at last my bones were cast
Upon a sharp and slimy beach
Where on the sand a moth-eaten band
Of monkeys gabbled, each to each.
Monstrous they were with matted fur,
Faces smiling like open sores;
Such was their stench that it gave me a wrench:
“Touch me not or you’re damned!” I roars.
But worst of all, though their heads were small
And fit like nuts for cracking,
Their feet were the size of Victoria’s thighs —
No use to try attacking.
Odoriferous, Lord! And vociferous
They stammered and stank all about me,
Then tried to unmind me by pointing behind me
When one of ’em made to clout me.
‘Twas my belief that she was their chief
(If such could be anointed);
Each toe was big as a suckling pig
And her tiny skull was pointed.
In midair she stopped, to her knees she dropped
And kissed my offended fingers.
I’ve since washed and washed at a fatal cost
Yet still the smell of her lingers.
“In short,” she queried, “would you be married?
And if you’re not, are you looking?
Unless you’re my beau, your carcass we’ll throw
Into that pot a-cooking.”
She showed me a stew where my traitorous crew
Were turned into appetizers.
My men, once vicious, were now delicious
And none of them the wiser.
“In every port,” I says in retort,
“I’ve got a gal I call my wife
And more’s the pity ’cause they’re all pretty
With looks not like to shorten my life.
“In any event your lovely scent
Leaves something to be desired.
I’d sooner be buried than getting married
To an animal that’s expired!”
At this she rears and covers her ears
And screams to have me skewered.
Though few the men within her ken
She seems to want one fewer.
But I offers my knee completely free
To her dainty knob of a nose;
Then as if by chance I dances a dance
On all twelve of her swollen toes.
And before the twits could gather their wits
I parted ’em like the ocean
And rendered ‘em gutless with dagger and cutlass
To prove my undying devotion.
Without looking back I beat a track
To the brink of the Devil’s waters
And diving headfirst I swore a curse
On Darwin and all his daughters.
It was sink or swim and by God’s whim
I sunk straight down to the bottom
Where my bones were sweet with delicate meat
For all the sharks that got ’em.
When next I awoke I was coughing up smoke
And tied to a bed o’ fire;
The name’s Dan O’Brien and now I’m lyin’
Where everyone’s a liar.