Rudyard Kipling 2

by Toby Darling

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More poems by Rudyard Kipling I have set to music


released April 22, 2016

All poems by Rudyard Kipling
All music composed and recorded by Toby Darling




Toby Darling Winchester, UK

Amateur enthusiast.
Feel free to do anything you want with these tracks, I am not interested in making money from music.

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Track Name: Danny Deever
Danny Deever

Am Em F C
"What are the bugles blowin' for? " said Files-on-Parade.
Am Em F Am
"To turn you out, to turn you out," the Colour-Sergeant said.
C G F Am
"What makes you look so white, so white? " said Files-on-Parade.
C G F Am
"I'm dreadin' what I've got to watch," the Colour-Sergeant said.
Dm E7 Am D
For they're hangin' Danny Deever, you can hear the Dead March play
C G F-G E7
The regiment's in 'ollow square - they're hangin' him to-day;
C G Am D
They've taken of his buttons off an' cut his stripes away,
C G Am
An' they're hangin' Danny Deever in the mornin'.

"What makes the rear-rank breathe so 'ard? " said Files-on-Parade.
"It's bitter cold, it's bitter cold," the Colour-Sergeant said.
"What makes that front-rank man fall down? " said Files-on-Parade.
"A touch o' sun, a touch o' sun," the Colour-Sergeant said.
They are hangin' Danny Deever, they are marchin' of 'im round,
They 'ave 'alted Danny Deever by 'is coffin on the ground;
An' e'll swing in 'arf a minute for a sneakin' shootin' hound
0 they're hangin' Danny Deever in the mornin'!

" 'Is cot was right-'and cot to mine," said Files-on-Parade.
" 'E's sleepin' out an' far to-night," the Colour-Sergeant said.
"I've drunk 'is beer a score o' times," said Files-on-Parade.
" 'E's drinkin' bitter beer alone," the Colour-Sergeant said.
They are hangin' Danny Deever, you must mark 'im to 'is place,
For 'e shot a comrade sleepin' - you must look 'im in the face;
Nine 'undred of 'is county an' the Regiment's disgrace,
While they're hangin' Danny Deever in the mornin'.

"What's that so black agin the sun? " said Files-on-Parade.
"It's Danny fightin' 'ard for life," the Colour-Sergeant said.
"What's that that whimpers over'ead? " said Files-on-Parade.
"It's Danny's soul that's passin' now," the Colour-Sergeant said.
For they're done with Danny Deever, you can 'ear the quickstep play
The regiment's in column, an' they're marchin' us away;
Ho! the young recruits are shakin', an' they'll want their beer to-day,
After hangin' Danny Deever in the mornin'.
Track Name: The Widow's Party
The Widow's Party
"Where have you been this while away,
C Dm
Johnnie, Johnnie?"
'Long with the rest on a picnic lay,
C Am Dm
Johnnie, my Johnnie, aha!
F Am E7
They called us out of the barrack-yard
F G Am
To Gawd knows where from Gosport Hard,
Am G F Am
And you can't refuse when you get the card,
Dm E7
And the Widow gives the party.
(Bugle: Ta—rara—ra-ra-rara!)

"What did you get to eat and drink,
Johnnie, Johnnie?"
Standing water as thick as ink,
Johnnie, my Johnnie, aha!
A bit o' beef that were three year stored,
A bit o' mutton as tough as a board,
And a fowl we killed with a sergeant's sword,
When the Widow give the party.

"What did you do for knives and forks,
Johnnie, Johnnie?"
We carries 'em with us wherever we walks,
Johnnie, my Johnnie, aha!
And some was sliced and some was halved,
And some was crimped and some was carved,
And some was gutted and some was starved,
When the Widow give the party.

"What ha' you done with half your mess,
Johnnie, Johnnie?"
They couldn't do more and they wouldn't do less,
Johnnie, my Johnnie, aha!
They ate their whack and they drank their fill,
And I think the rations has made them ill,
For half my comp'ny's lying still
Where the Widow give the party.

"How did you get away—away,
Johnnie, Johnnie?"
On the broad o' my back at the end o' the day,
Johnnie, my Johnnie, aha!
I comed away like a bleedin' toff,
For I got four natives to carry me off,
As I lay in the bight of a canvas trough,
When the Widow give the party.

"What was the end of all the show,
Johnnie, Johnnie?"
Ask my Colonel, for I don't know,
Johnnie, my Johnnie, aha!
We broke a King and we built a road—
A court-house stands where the reg'ment goed.
And the river's clean where the raw blood flowed
When the Widow give the party.
(Bugle: Ta—rara—ra-ra-rara!)
Track Name: Before a Midnight Breaks in Storm
"Before a Midnight Breaks in Storm"

Intro: Fmaj7 C x4 [Fmaj7 = xx3555]

Fmaj7 C
Before a midnight breaks in storm,
Fmaj7 C
Or herded sea in wrath,
Fmaj7 C
Ye know what wavering gusts inform
Dm7 G
The greater tempest's path;
Dm7 G
Till the loosed wind Drive all from mind, C Fmaj7
Except Distress, which, so will prophets cry,
C Fmaj7 G Fmaj7
O'ercame them, houseless, from the unhinting sky.

Ere rivers league against the land
In piratry of flood,
We know what waters steal and stand
Where seldom water stood. Yet who will note, Till fields afloat,
And washen carcass and the returning well,
Trumpet what these poor heralds strove to tell?

Dm G
Ye know who use the Crystal Ball C F (To peer by stealth on Doom),
Dm G
The Shade that, shaping first of all, Am
Prepares an empty room.
Dm G
Then doth It pass C F Like breath from glass,
F G Am
But, on the extorted Vision bowed intent,
No man considers why It came or went.

Before the years reborn behold Themselves with stranger eye,
And the sport-making Gods of old,
Like Samson slaying, die, Many shall hear The all-pregnant sphere,
Bow to the birth and sweat, but--speech denied--
Sit dumb or--dealt in part--fall weak and wide.
Yet instant to fore-shadowed need
The eternal balance swings;
That winged men, the Fates may breed
So soon as Fate hath wings. These shall possess Our littleness,
And in the imperial task (as worthy) lay
Up our lives' all to piece one giant Day.

Outro: Fmaj7 C x3 G C
Track Name: Mesopotamia


Riff on A

THEY shall not return to us, the resolute, the young,
Dm C A
The eager and whole-hearted whom we gave:
Dm C Gm Dm
But the men who left them thriftily to die in their own dung,
C Gm A
Shall they come with years and honour to the grave?

They shall not return to us; the strong men coldly slain
In sight of help denied from day to day:
But the men who edged their agonies and chid them in their pain,
Are they too strong and wise to put away?

Dm Am7 Dm G
Our dead shall not return to us while Day and Night divide–
F C Dm
Never while the bars of sunset hold.
Dm Am7 Dm G
But the idle-minded overlings who quibbled while they died,
F C D7
Shall they thrust for high employments as of old?

Shall we only threaten and be angry for an hour:
When the storm is ended shall we find
How softly but how swiftly they have sidled back to power
By the favour and contrivance of their kind?

Even while they soothe us, while they promise large amends,
Even while they make a show of fear,
Do they call upon their debtors, and take counsel with their friends,
To confirm and re-establish each career?

Their lives cannot repay us–their death could not undo–
The shame that they have laid upon our race.
But the slothfulness that wasted and the arrogance that slew,
Shell we leave it unabated in its place?

I play the riff using the A and D strings, something like: x02xxx x03xxx, x07xxx, x05xxx, x7xxxx, x5xxxx.
Track Name: Brown Bess
"Brown Bess"
The Army Musket 1700-1815

F Am F C
IN the days of lace-ruffles, perukes and brocade
F Dm C Dm
Brown Bess was a partner whom none could despise –
F C Dm F
An out-spoken, flinty-lipped, brazen-faced jade,
Am F Dm C
With a habit of looking men straight in the eyes –
Dm C Dm F
At Blenheim and Ramillies fops would confess
Dm F C F
They were pierced to the heart by the charms of Brown Bess.

Though her sight was not long and her weight was not small,
Yet her actions were winning, her language was clear;
And everyone bowed as she opened the ball
On the arm of some high-gaitered, grim grenadier.
Half Europe admitted the striking success
Of the dances and routs that were given by Brown Bess.

Bb Am F C
When ruffles were turned into stiff leather stocks,
F Dm G G
And people wore pigtails instead of perukes,
Bb C Bb Dm
Brown Bess never altered her iron-grey locks.
F C Dm Am
She knew she was valued for more than her looks.
Gm F Gm C
"Oh, powder and patches was always my dress,
F Dm C F
And I think am killing enough," said Brown Bess.

So she followed her red-coats, whatever they did,
From the heights of Quebec to the plains of Assaye,
From Gibraltar to Acre, Cape Town and Madrid,
And nothing about her was changed on the way;
(But most of the Empire which now we possess
Was won through those years by old-fashioned Brown Bess.)

In stubborn retreat or in stately advance,
From the Portugal coast to the cork-woods of Spain,
She had puzzled some excellent Marshals of France
Till none of them wanted to meet her again:
But later, near Brussels, Napoleon - no less –
Arranged for a Waterloo ball with Brown Bess.

She had danced till the dawn of that terrible day –
She danced till the dusk of more terrible night,
And before her linked squares his battalions gave way,
And her long fierce quadrilles put his lancers to flight:
And when his gilt carriage drove off in the press,
"I have danced my last dance for the world!" said Brown Bess.

If you go to Museums – there's one in Whitehall –
Where old weapons are shown with their names writ beneath,
You will find her, upstanding, her back to the wall,
As stiff as a ramrod, the flint in her teeth.
And if ever we English had reason to bless
Any arm save our mothers', that arm is Brown Bess!
Track Name: Cells
Cells (Rudyard Kipling)

I'VE A HEAD like a concertina: I've a tongue like a button-stick:
F Am E7 Am
I've a mouth like an old potato, and I'm more than a little sick,
But I've had my fun o' the Corp'ral's Guard: I've made the cinders fly,
F Am E7 Am
And I'm here in the Clink for a thundering drink and blacking the Corporal's eye.

F Am F Am
With a second-hand overcoat under my head,
And a beautiful view of the yard,
F Am F Am
O it's pack-drill for me and a fortnight's C.B.
Bb C Dm
For "drunk and resisting the Guard!"
Bb C Dm
Mad drunk and resisting the Guard –
Bb C A7
'Strewth, but I socked it them hard !
F Am F Am
So it's pack-drill for me and a fortnight's C.B.
G F E7
For "drunk and resisting the Guard."

I started o' canteen porter, I finished o' canteen beer,
But a dose o' gin that a mate slipped in, it was that that brought me here.
'Twas that and an extry double Guard that rubbed my nose in the dirt;
But I fell away with the Corp'ral's stock and the best of the Corp'ral's shirt.

I left my cap in a public-house, my boots in the public road,
And Lord knows where, and I don't care, my belt and my tunic goed;
They'll stop my pay, they'll cut away the stripes I used to wear,
But I left my mark on the Corp'ral's face, and I think he'll keep it there!

My wife she cries on the barrack-gate, my kid in the barrack-yard,
It ain't that I mind the Ord'ly room - it's that that cuts so hard.
I'll take my oath before them both that I will sure abstain,
But as soon as I'm in with a mate and gin, I know I'll do it again!

With a second-hand overcoat under my head,
And a beautiful view of the yard,
Yes, it's pack-drill for me and a fortnight's C.B.
For "drunk and resisting the Guard !"
Mad drunk and resisting the Guard -
'Strewth, but I socked it them hard !
So it's pack-drill for me and a fortnight's C.B.
For "drunk and resisting the Guard."
Track Name: Tommy
Intro: C G F Am, Em Am Dm G, C G F Am, C G Am

C G F Am
I went into a public-'ouse to get a pint o' beer,
Em Am Dm G
The publican 'e up an' sez, "We serve no red-coats here."
C G F Am
The girls be'ind the bar they laughed an' giggled fit to die,
C G F Am
I outs into the street again an' to myself sez I:
Bb F Dm G O it's Tommy this, an' Tommy that, an' "Tommy, go away";
Em Am Dm G But it's "Thank you, Mister Atkins", when the band begins to play,
C G F Am The band begins to play, my boys, the band begins to play,
Bb F Am O it's "Thank you, Mister Atkins", when the band begins to play.

I went into a theatre as sober as could be,
They gave a drunk civilian room, but 'adn't none for me;
They sent me to the gallery or round the music-'alls,
But when it comes to fightin', Lord! they'll shove me in the stalls! For it's Tommy this, an' Tommy that, an' "Tommy, wait outside"; But it's "Special train for Atkins" when the trooper's on the tide, The troopship's on the tide, my boys, the troopship's on the tide, O it's "Special train for Atkins" when the trooper's on the tide.

Dm G Dm G
Yes, makin' mock o' uniforms that guard you while you sleep
Am C G F
Is cheaper than them uniforms, an' they're starvation cheap;
Dm G Dm G
An' hustlin' drunken soldiers when they're goin' large a bit
Am C G
Is five times better business than paradin' in full kit. Then it's Tommy this, an' Tommy that, an' "Tommy, 'ow's yer soul?" But it's "Thin red line of 'eroes" when the drums begin to roll, The drums begin to roll, my boys, the drums begin to roll, O it's "Thin red line of 'eroes" when the drums begin to roll.

We aren't no thin red 'eroes, nor we aren't no blackguards too,
But single men in barricks, most remarkable like you;
An' if sometimes our conduck isn't all your fancy paints,
Why, single men in barricks don't grow into plaster saints; While it's Tommy this, an' Tommy that, an' "Tommy, fall be'ind", But it's "Please to walk in front, sir", when there's trouble in the wind, There's trouble in the wind, my boys, there's trouble in the wind, O it's "Please to walk in front, sir", when there's trouble in the wind.

You talk o' better food for us, an' schools, an' fires, an' all:
We'll wait for extry rations if you treat us rational.
Don't mess about the cook-room slops, but prove it to our face
The Widow's Uniform is not the soldier-man's disgrace. For it's Tommy this, an' Tommy that, an' "Chuck him out, the brute!" But it's "Saviour of 'is country" when the guns begin to shoot; An' it's Tommy this, an' Tommy that, an' anything you please; An' Tommy ain't a bloomin' fool -- you bet that Tommy sees!
Track Name: The River's Tale
The River's Tale (Kipling)


Intro: Em G Am D, Em G Am x2

Em G Am D
TWENTY bridges from Tower to Kew -
Em G Am D
Wanted to know what the River knew,
Em G Am D
Twenty Bridges or twenty-two,
Em G
For they were young, and the Thames was old
And this is the tale that River told:-

Em G
"I walk my beat before London Town,
Am D
Five hours up and seven down.
Em G
Up I go till I end my run
Am D
At Tide-end-town, which is Teddington.

G Bm7
Down I come with the mud in my hands
And plaster it over the Maplin Sands.
Em G
But I'd have you know that these waters of mine
Am D
Were once a branch of the River Rhine,

Em D
When hundreds of miles to the East I went
And England was joined to the Continent.

[intro instrumental]

Em G
"I remember the bat-winged lizard-birds,
Am D
The Age of Ice and the mammoth herds,
Em G
And the giant tigers that stalked them down
Am D
Through Regent's Park into Camden Town.
G Bm7
And I remember like yesterday
The earliest Cockney who came my way,
Em G
When he pushed through the forest that lined the Strand,
Am D
With paint on his face and a club in his hand.
Em D
He was death to feather and fin and fur.
He trapped my beavers at Westminster.
He netted my salmon, he hunted my deer,
G Am
He killed my heron off Lambeth Pier.
G Am
He fought his neighbour with axes and swords,
G Am
Flint or bronze, at my upper fords,
Em G
While down at Greenwich, for slaves and tin,
Am D
The tall Phoenician ships stole in,
Em G
And North Sea war-boats, painted and gay,
Am D
Flashed like dragon-flies, Erith way;
G Bm7
And Norseman and Negro and Gaul and Greek
Drank with the Britons in Barking Creek,
Em G
And life was gay, and the world was new,
Am D
And I was a mile across at Kew!
Em D
But the Roman came with a heavy hand,
And bridged and roaded and ruled the land,
Em G
And the Roman left and the Danes blew in –
Am G
And that's where your history-books begin!"

[intro instrumental, end on G]
Track Name: Bill 'Awkins
Bill ‘Awkins (Kipling)

G Bm7
“'As anybody seen Bill 'Awkins?”
“Now 'ow in the devil would I know?”
G Bm7
“Well 'e's taken my girl out walkin',
An' I've got to tell 'im so—
G D Am7
C D Em
I've got to tell 'im so.”
“D'yer know what 'e's like, Bill 'Awkins?”
“Now what in the devil would I care?”
“Well 'e's the livin', breathin' image of an organ-grinder's monkey,
With a pound of grease in 'is 'air—
An' a pound o' grease in 'is 'air.”

“An' s'pose you met Bill 'Awkins,
Now what in the devil 'ud ye do?”
“Why, I'd open 'is cheek to 'is chin-strap buckle,
An' bung up 'is both eyes, too—
An' bung up 'is both eyes, too!”

“Look 'ere, where 'e comes, Bill 'Awkins!
Now what in the devil will you say?”
“Well it ain't fit an' proper to be fightin' on a Sunday,
So I'll pass 'im the time o' day—
I'll pass 'im the time o' day!”