Grateful Dead

Ship Of Fools

Lyrics By: Robert Hunter
Music By: Jerry Garcia

Went to see the captain, strangest I could find
Laid my proposition down, laid it on the line
I won't slave for beggar's pay, likewise gold and jewels
But I would slave to learn the way to sink your ship of fools

Chorus Ship of fools on a cruel sea
Ship of fools sail away from me
It was later than I thought when I first believed you
But now I cannot share your laughter, ship of fools

Saw your first ship sink and drown from rocking of the boat
And all that could not sink of swim were just left there to float
I won't leave you drifting down but whoa it makes me wild
With thirty years upon my head to have you call me child (note 1)

The bottles stand as empty now, as they were filled before
Time there was and plenty, but from that cup no more
Though I could not caution all, I still might warn a few
Don't lend your hand to raise no flag atop no ship of fools

(1) Jerry subsequently changed this line to "With forty years upon my head ..." and, I believe, eventually to "fifty years"

Ship Of Fools