"I was born when horses pulled the plough
And marriage held by but a vow
A beggar’s hand assumed sincere
Much has changed these hundred years"
We all joined in the chorus and you could hear a catch in the voices of the hardiest hearts:
"Hold me high and send me low
For it is time for me to go
And in my eyes you’ll see no tears
For I have lived one hundred years"
Brooke is a fascinating bundle of whispered wonders.
"She fell in love, with a man on a boat
His sails were high, he could keep them afloat
But her bones ached and he would grind his ivory body on their love left behind.
She was the type to keep her end of the bet,
but with nothing to feed off, half way she met,
a married man, soft and strong,
his heard of silk had been stamped upon."
The song is worldly, yet not of this world, an intoxicating cocktail of traditional shanty and woozy modernity that perfectly illustrates the duality of this unsettling and enchanting performer's allure. Naive and knowing.