"Wooden Ships" as written by Paul L. Kantner, David Crosby and Stephen A. Stills....
If you smile at me, I will understand
'Cause that is something everybody everywhere does
In the same language
I can see by your coat, my friend
You're from the other side
There's just one thing I got to know
Can you tell me please, who won the war ?
Say, can I have some of your purple berries?
Yes, I've been eating them for six or seven weeks now
Haven't got sick once
Probably keep us both alive
Wooden ships on the water, very free and easy
Easy, you know the way it's supposed to be
Silver people on the shoreline, let us be
Talkin' 'bout very free and easy
Horror grips us as we watch you die
All we can do is echo your anguished cries
Stare as all human feelings die
We are leaving, you don't need us
Go, take your sister then, by the hand
Lead her…

Lyrics submitted by SongMeanings, edited by norder

Wooden Ships song meanings
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    Song MeaningI tend to think this is written about Magellan's effort to circumnavigate the globe. One commentator referenced the wars against the Muslims in Spain of the era, and a European asking who won.

    Most clearly though were these events where some were on the ship and others seemed to have an agreeable visit with the natives of Patagonia or what would become the Philippines, only to see their comrades hacked to pieces on the shore. The men left on the ship were helpless to save them.

    Magellan left Seville with 5 ships and 250 men in 1519. What returned a few years later was one ship and 18 men, not all of them European. Someone said the song referenced a genocide of natives, but that doesn't seem possible in this context.
    ShortLegson July 04, 2013   Link

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