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Barka - Religious and Sacred Music of Polonia(Includes lyrics, chords, audio / video)
Graj, Panu, Graj!

Christmas CD
Religious Music of Polonia!: Barka

INTRO: C  F G7  C  F  Dm  G7     

  C                      G7        C                 C7
1. Pan, kiedyś stanął nad brzegiem, 
            F       Dm                    G           G7        
Szukał ludzi gotowych pójść za Nim, 
               C                  G7         C         C7
By łowić serca, słów Bożych prawdą.

     F        G7                                  C  
O, Panie, to Ty na mnie spojrzałeś, 
             Dm     G7                           C   C7
Twoje usta dziś wyrzekły me imię. 
            F        G7                                  C  
Swoją barkę pozostawiam na brzegu,
                  Dm     G7                         C         
 Razem z Tobą nowy zacznę dziś łów.

2. Jestem ubogim człowiekiem,
Moim skarbem są ręce gotowe,
Do pracy z Tobą i czyste serce.

3. Ty, potrzebujesz mych dłoni,
Mego serca młodego zapałem,
Mych kropli, potu i samotności.

4. Dziś wypływamy już razem,
Łowić serca na morzach dusz ludzkich, 
Twej prawdy siecią i słowem życia.

Key: C
Capo Position: 1st fret


Note: Barka is not a traditional Polish song. It was written by Cesáreo Gabaráin Azurmendi, a Spanish Basque priest and is included here because it is widely recognized to have been the favorite song of Pope John Paul II. Its Spanish title is Pescador de hombres (Fisher of Men).

Polonia Music
Many Polish melodies are sung in churches around the world with lyrics in the local languages. Here is an example: El Angel Vino de los Cielos.
Religious Music of Polonia

To view the complete list of this site's Polish hymns 


“Barka” – The Favorite Song Of John Paul IIWanda Slawinska • Wed, Feb 09, 2011(Sung during the “Light-Life Oasis” spiritual retreats conducted by Archbishop Wojtyla for teenagers)

Everyone has favorite songs. When I learned Polish religious songs early in life, naturally, I thought that they were written and composed by Polish authors. Twice, in recent years, however, I was mistaken. The first time was with the hymn, My chcemy Boga (We want God.) It was at a Mass in St. Joseph’s Church, in Niagara Falls, celebrated by the late Msgr. Richard S. Amico. I heard the familiar melody with a slight variation. They were singing Noi vogliam Dio. The words were the same, but in Italian. The notation at the top said it was “Traditional,” which usually means it has been handed down from generation to generation, until the author or composer’s name is lost.

Now I ask myself how many more “Polish” songs do I know which did not originate in Poland? What would you think when a song that you especially liked was also a favorite of John Paul II? There is one that many of us can name and, perhaps, sing. It is Goralu, czy ci nie zal? (Highlander, do you not grieve?) This favorite of our Holy Father was part and parcel of my family’s experience when we, and thousands of other Polish refugees after World War II, were stranded in Europe between the tyranny of communism and the despair of homelessness. That song had a deep meaning also for our Holy Father, who knew that in the same way he, too, albeit for other reasons, would never again return home. 

The song, Pan kiedys stanal nad brzegiem, or Barka (The Barge), as it is better known, (Lord you have come to the seashore), was most significant for the Holy Father. It contained the theme that he adopted for his pontificate, since Christ had called him, as he called his apostles, and told him not to be afraid, as henceforth he would be a fisherman of men. And it was with this same homily that Benedict XVI began his pontificate.

My first awakening to the origins of this song was when I found it in Spanish in a church hymnal. Not quite believing it, I thought, “Oh, it’s been translated into Spanish!” Next, I looked for a name at the top of the page, and found that it was not Polish at all, for Cesareo Gabarain was the author. Then and there I decided to do some research on it.