Newly Discovered Titanic Poem


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Dave Gittins

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Connoisseurs of dreadful poetry will be familiar with the works of William McGonagall, the Scottish “Poet and Tragedian” whose truly awful verses include “The Tay Bridge Disaster” and “The Famous Tay Whale.” The latter was memorably set to music by Mátyás Seiber in 1958, proving that his deeply felt poetry crosses boundaries of race and language. Indeed, It is greatly improved by the reader being completely ignorant of English. His verse on the Titanic disaster is deservedly little known. Strongly resembling “The Tay Bridge Disaster”, it shows that time had not improved his poetic technique.


The Lamentable Titanic Disaster.

By William Topaz McGonagall, Poet and Tragedian.

Oh, mighty Titanic! It grieves me to say
That over fifteen hundred lives were taken away,
When the ocean did drown your passengers so happy and gay,
Which happened on the fifteenth day of April in the year 1912,
When brave Captain Smith cried, “Every man for himself”!

The Titanic was built in Belfast, under a gantry made by Arrol,
Who did make the New Railway Bridge over Silvery Tay,
Whose fame is known to this very day,
And those who built her were heard to say
That crossing the Atlantic would be to her but play,
Especially Mr J. Bruce Ismay.

It was on the tenth of April and 1912 was the year,
When the mighty Titanic sailed without fear
And crossed the Channel from England to France,
While her carefree passengers did sing and dance,
And all the rich passengers, such as John Jacob Astor,
Did take with them servants, never thinking of disaster,
Any more than did brave Captain Smith, the Master,

The Titanic left France in the night,
And presented a most beautiful and wonderful sight,
With her numerous portholes lit by electric light,
And next day did reach Ireland’s green shore,
Where poor Irish emigrants did come on board by the score,
Because they hoped that in the United States
They would meet better fates,
And I say without fear that their expectations might have come true
If they had not been sunk beneath the ocean blue,
Which happened on the fifteenth day of April in the year 1912,
When brave Captain Smith cried, “Every man for himself”!

In the Far North, the Demon of the Ice
Prepared for to destroy the Titanic in a trice,
And did send a mighty iceberg in the Titanic’s way,
That the works of Man over Nature might not hold sway,
And in their pride the crew did not obey
The warnings sent to them from far away
By the wonderful wireless of Signor Marconi,
Whose invention did earn him great sums of money.

And, oh, it was a most terrible sight
When, just before the middle of the night,
The mighty Titanic struck the ice in full flight,
Making the sea to rush into the ship with all its might.

It grieves me to say that not enough boats
Were provided to keep the poor people afloat
And though brave Captain Rostron came, regardless of cost,
More than fifteen hundred souls were lost,
As well as numerous pieces of kitchen ware
And articles of commerce, both humble and rare,
Which happened on the fifteenth day of April in the year 1912,
When brave Captain Smith cried, “Every man for himself”!

I must now conclude my song
By saying that the life of the Titanic would have been long,
If those who had designed the boat
Had taken greater pains to make it stay afloat.
 
Jul 9, 2000
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Gawd! I hope this chap didn't quit his day job.

Dave, OM, where do you find this stuff?
happy.gif


Cordially,
Michael H. Standart
 
Dec 12, 1999
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A piece of dreck, compared to "Convergence of the Twain"? Oh definitely. But there are worse things in the world. Like anything by Eminem. Just keep that in mind whenever you come across yet another halfpenny dreadful work about the Titanic.
 
Dec 12, 1999
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Yes, and also extremely prejudiced, talent-impaired white rap artists who perform at the Grammys with Elton John (shame on Elton for that!)
 
A

Andrew Rogers

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When I was a kid all I ever wanted to be was a Tragedian.
Nice one Dave. How about singing us some of those songs?
Andrew
 

Dave Gittins

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OK, now own up all those who swallowed this "poem" without reading the date of the posting. Own up all those who took it on trust without checking McGonagall's dates.

In fact "The Lamentable Titanic Disaster" was written in 2000 by Crazy Dave Gittins. Though I say it myself, it's a damn good parody.

McGonagall died in 1902. For some of his works go to http://www.taynet.co.uk/users/mcgon There is an official site at http://www.mcgonagall.org.uk but it runs slowly and some of the links don't work.

Catch you next year!
 

Philip Hind

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I read in the paper yesterday that dozens of people were evacuated from Beach Head after a local radio station reported that a full scale replica of the Titanic would be sailing past. Apparently all the people standing on the cliffs caused cracks to appear in it!
 
Dec 12, 1999
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I have an excuse from my doctor! I'm suffering from "Horatio Hornblower" fever!!! So obviously I cannot be held responsible for not noticing the date!!
 
Sep 12, 2000
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Yes, the ratbaggery award was presented in great fanfare and was well received by the recipients as they did their gotchas with so much glee it is really sickening.

Mr Gittins, in rare form simply savored his victory over moi as I thanked him profusely for the wonderful poem having once again found something so rare. And with no gentleness at all but with great glee in his heart and soul he pounced with his email...GOTCHA!

Yes, he did do that,...ahhhh, but revenge is sweet! And there is always next year!

In all sincerity sir, you done good. I think you got a lot of people.

Enjoy your day down under.
Maureen.
 
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