Monday, August 18, 2014

The Nearest Things to Dreams (The Fergusons Song)

 The quote from the Salford poet Robert Rose jumped out at me from a tweet posted by Dumbarton MSP Jackie Baillie. Fergusons is the last non-military shipyard on the Clyde and the last of any sort on the Lower Clyde. It now being in administration, with the potential loss of 70 jobs, is a tragedy for the communities of Port Glasgow and Greenock.

“Ships are the nearest things to dreams that hands have ever made,
For somewhere deep in their oaken hearts the soul of a song is laid.”

 Robert N Rose

 Heard there’s a padlock on the gates today
Went down to check, I just walked away
The Prince of Wales for a pint or two
Try to think of something else to do

 One hundred and eleven years
That’s how long there’s been a shipyard here
Not one order on the books they say
They’re saying nothing about our back pay

 The nearest things to dreams That hands have made or ever will
Now all our hopes and dreams
Have turned to unpaid bills
Through calm and storm
Those ships are sailing still
 The nearest things to dreams

 Politicians do the stuff they always do
Say it’s very sad, that much at least is true
They say there are jobs for us, that things just might be fine
In call centres, or one pound shops, or selling junk online

 And in my house there’s pictures on my walls
Too many names for me to say them all
Flying Foam, the Flying Spray, Scotia, Sulisker
The Star Capella, Tirrick and the Shalder were built here

 The Fivla and the Loch Dunvegan, Isle of Arran, Stirling Spey
The Pharos and the Falcon, the Hebrides, the Stirling Tay
I look at them, nothing can change the way I feel
The pride and mystery of my seagoing steel

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