The Yeomen of the Guard


   

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No. 18: SCENE

"Hark! What Was That, Sir?"
Midi Symbol MIDI File [40KB, 3' 54"] Sequenced by Colin Johnson

Shot heard. Enter Sergeant Meryll hastily.

Meryll.
Hark! What was that, sir?

Fairfax.
Why, an arquebus —
Fired from the wharf, unless I much mistake.

Meryll.
Strange — and at such an hour! What can it mean!

Enter Chorus excitedly.

Chorus.
Now what can that have been—
A shot so late at night,
Enough to cause a fright!
What can the portent mean?
Are foemen in the land?
Is London to be wrecked?
What are we to expect?
What danger is at hand?
Let us understand
What danger is at hand!

Lieutenant enters, also Point and Wilfred.

Lieutenant.
Who fired that shot? At once the truth declare?

Wilfred.
My lord, 'twas I — to rashly judge forebear!

Point.
My lord, 'twas he — to rashly judge forebear!

Wilfred.
Like a ghost his vigil keeping —
Point.
Or a spectre all-appalling —
Wilfred.
I beheld a figure creeping —
Point.
I should rather call it crawling —
Wilfred.
He was creeping —
Point.
He was crawling —
Wilfred.
He was creeping, creeping —
Point.
Crawling!
Wilfred.
He was creeping —
Point.
He was crawling —
Wilfred.
He was creeping, creeping —
Point.
Crawling!
1953 Production
Click on picture to enlarge

Wilfred.
Not a moment's hesitation —
I myself upon him flung,
With a hurried exclamation
To his draperies I hung;
Then we closed with one another
In a rough-and-tumble smother;
Colonel Fairfax and no other
Was the man to whom I clung!

All.
Colonel Fairfax and no other,
Colonel Fairfax and no other,
Colonel Fairfax and no other,
Was the man to whom he clung!

Wilfred.
After mighty tug and tussle —
Point.
It resembled more a struggle —
Wilfred.
He, by dint of stronger muscle —
Point.
Or by some infernal juggle —
Wilfred.
From my clutches quickly sliding —
Point.
I should rather call it slipping —
Wilfred.
With a view, no doubt, of hiding —
Point.
Or escaping to the shipping —
Wilfred.
With a gasp, and with a quiver —
Point.
I'd describe it as a shiver —
Wilfred.
Down he dived into the river,
And, alas, I cannot swim.

All.
It's enough to make one shiver,
With a gasp, and with a quiver,
Down he dived into the river;
It was very brave of him!

Wilfred.
Ingenuity is catching;
With the view my King of pleasing,
Arquebus from sentry snatching —
Point.
I should rather call it seizing —
Wilfred.
With an ounce or two of lead
I dispatched him through the head!
All.
With an ounce or two of lead
He dispatched him through the head!
Wilfred.
I discharged it without winking,
Little time I lost in thinking,
Like a stone I saw him sinking —
Point.
I should say a lump of lead.
All.
He discharged it without winking,
Little time he lost in thinking.
Wilfred.
Like a stone I saw him sinking —
Point.
I should say a lump of lead.
Wilfred.
Like a stone, my boy, I said —
Point.
Like a heavy lump of lead —
Wilfred.
Like a stone, my boy, I said —
Point.
Like a heavy lump of lead.
Wilfred.
Anyhow, the man is dead,
Whether stone or lump of lead!
All.
Anyhow, the man is dead,
Whether stone or lump of lead!
Arquebus from sentry seizing,
With the view his King of pleasing,
Arquebus from sentry seizing,
With the view his King of pleasing,
Wilfred shot him through the head,
And he's very, very dead!
And it matters very little
Whether stone or lump of lead,
It is very, very certain that
He's very, very dead!

Lieutenant.
The river must be dragged — no time be lost;
The body must be found, at any cost.
To this attend without undue delay;
So set to work with what dispatch ye may!

Exit Lieutenant.

All.
Yes, yes, we'll set to work with what dispatch we may!
Hail the valiant fellow who
Did this deed of derring do!
Honours wait on such an one;
By my head, 'twas bravely done, 'twas bravely done!
Now, by my head, 'twas bravely done!

Men raise Wilfred, and carry him off on their shoulders. Exeunt all but Elsie, Point, Fairfax, and Phœbe.

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