EVERY SHIP NEEDS A HELMSMAN
Every manic needs a depressive
Every depressive needs a manic
Every dominant needs a recessive
People think we’re so aggressive
Underneath our front there’s panic
Let’s not get depressed or obsessive
Every conman needs a sucker
Every sucker needs to be conned
You don’t have to be a stupid mucker
If you don’t count your change don’t squeal if it’s wrong.
We have got a special pedigree
From Karl Marx’s holy family tree
With an Engels-pure heredity
– then we cross:
1, 2 & 3: Lenin fucked my grandma.
2: Trotsky fucked my mam.
1: Uncle Ho,
3: And there’s Uncle Jo
1: Not to speak of Chairman Mo,
4: And that sexy old Makhno,
1, 2, 3, & 4: All the great bods had a go
(crescendo:) SEE WHAT A BIG STRONG LAD
Every junkie needs a mania
Every politician needs Tanzania
Moscow, Castro or Albania:
Make your vow.
Every setback needs a victory
Every doubt must have a mystery
We’re hooked on history now.
Many thanks to John Rudge for sending me a copy of the York IS magazine from 1970. It includes some treats, such as a letter back from Peter Sedgwick in New York, a second piece by Sedgwick warning against a default position of assuming that socialists should vote for Labour, Juliet Ash on the women’s liberation movement, and a sympathetic piece by Dave Gibson on skinheads.
It also includes the above song, which although unattributed (“Anon Trad.”), from its humour and themes of mental illness and (anti-) Stalinism, strikes me as almost certainly by Sedgwick