The Ballad of the Morris Men

By Caleb Parkin

English version, to the tune of Landlord Fill the Flowing Bowl

 

Now look at our almighty bells!

Our baldricks are red, our shirts are white.

Behankied handsLegs that leap!

Flow’ry hatslovely and bright.

 

We all drink the tankard ale,

Seek company in ev’ry worthy inn.

Then scatterbrained men barely know

How gyps do end, or hays begin.

 

We entertaining mensinging songs -

Unto your ears our squeezebox sounds!

Oh chuck us not into a terrible rubbish bin,

But behold our dances, our riotous rounds.

 

We’re Morris Menthe boyfriend and me,

Whose wonderful forries gleam!

Our bottom muscles do ache

The same as all who’re on the (gay or Morris) team.

Glossary of Morris Terms:

 

baldrick: part of the Morris uniform for Cotswold sides
gyps/forries: types of jumping dance move

hays/rounds: particular dance moves/figures

squeezebox: standard folk instrument, like an accordion

Tankard: ale hydration apparatus

Team/side: Morris group (‘on the Team’ also a Polari term for ‘on side’, queer)

© 2019 harana poetry

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