Grey Funnel Line

This is a term for the ships of the Navy comparing the colour of the funnel of other commercial shipping lines (e.g. Blue Funnel Line). The sing tells of the boredom, loneliness and longing for home which affected many a sailor. This is one of Cyril Tawney’s best known songs.

 

Don’t mind the wind nor the rolling sea.
The weary night never worries me.
But the hardest time in a sailor’s day,
Is to watch the sun as it fades away

It’s one more day on the grey funnel line.

The finest ship that sails the sea
Is still a prison for the likes of me,
But give me wings like Noah’s dove;
I’ll fly up harbor to the one I love.

It’s one more day on the grey funnel line.

Oh Lord, if dreams were only real.
I’d have my hands on that wooden wheel.
And with all my heart I’d turn her ’round,
And tell the boys that we’re homeward bound.

It’s one more day on the grey funnel line.

There was a time when I was free,
Like a broken spar on the open sea.
But now that spar is washed ashore,
And comes to rest at my true love’s door.

It’s one more day on the grey funnel line.

Each time I gaze behind the screws
Makes me long for St Peter’s shoes.
I’d dance on down that silver lane
Into the arms of my love again.

It’s one more day on the grey funnel line.

I’ll pass the time like some machine
Until the blue water turns to green.
Then I’ll dance down that walk on shore
And sail the Grey Funnel Line no more.

And sail the Grey Funnel Line no more.

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