The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #58054   Message #916569
Posted By: Keith A of Hertford
23-Mar-03 - 02:17 PM
Thread Name: Chord Req: Danny Deever (Kipling/Bellamy)
Subject: Meanings, Kipling army song
Danny Deaver.
Reminded of this song by the incident in the 101st camp yesterday.
It is a powerful story, with strong hints of an untold story also.
It is a dialogue between a Colour Sergeant and 'Files-on-Parade'.
Is Files a device to mean any soldier, as in rank and file, or ranker? In another song the name Tommy Atkins was used for him.

We are not told why Deaver 'shot his comrade sleeping' but Files remembers Deaver as a good friend. Also , Deaver's soul passes 'overhead' so presumably heavennward.

We are told that the distress in the ranks is caused by both bitter cold and a touch of sun, so presumably was neither?

The grisled old Colourman says he is white at dread of what he has to watch, but he would have seen plenty of death, and in Victorian England public hangings were a common place

So what was going on here. Any suggestions?

Drinking bitter beer alone,