The Thresher

Words and Music by Phil Ochs


In Portsmouth town on the eastern shore where many a fine ship was born
The Thresher was built and the Thresher was launched and the crew of the Tresher was sworn
She was shaped like a tear she was built like a shark
She was made to run fast and free
And the builder shook their hands and the builders shared their wine
Thought they had mastered the sea

Yes she'll always run silent
And she'll always run deep
Though the ocean has no pity
Though the waves will never weep, they'll never weep

And they marveled at her speed, marveled at her depth, marveled at her deadly design
And they sailed to every land, and they sailed to every port, just to see what faults they could find
Then they put her on the land for nine months to stand, and they worked on her from stem to stern
But they could never see it was their coffin to be, for the sea was waitin' for their return

On a cold Wednesday morn they put her out to sea when the waves were nine feet high
And they dove 'neath the waves and they dove to their graves, and they never said a last goodbye
And it's deeper and deeper and deeper they dove, just to see what their ship could stand
But the hull gave a moan and the hull gave a groan, and they plunged to the deepest, darkest sand
Now she lies in the depths of the darkened ocean floor covered by the waters cold and still
Oh, can't you see the wrong, she was a death ship all along, died before she had a chance to kill

And she'll never run silent, she'll never run deep
For the ocean had no pity and the waves they never weeped
They never weeped


Copyright © 1963 APPLESEED MUSIC, INC.